President describes influence probe as selective

Dalia Grybauskaitė

Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė says that the ongoing parliamentary investigation into businesses' influence on political processes is selective as it does not cover links between the current ruling bloc and businesses.

The president also says that the findings of the probe will have no legal consequences and that these findings could be used by the defense in a major political corruption case involving MG Baltic and several political parties.

In an interview with the Delfi.lt news website published on Wednesday, Grybauskaitė said it was regrettable that the investigation by the Seimas National Security and Defense Committee did not cover "elements of land grabbing" and land concentration.

"The current situation, where we see a business directly involved in politics at the Seimas, where we see elements of land grabbing and land concentration, and the fusion of business, agricultural now, with politics, is completely ignored," the president said.

"We can see that this is selective and we all must understand that," she added.

The media and opposition politicians have recently raised questions about the land holdings of Agrokoncernas, a business group owned by Ramūnas Karbauskis, leader of the ruling Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union (LVŽS).

Grybauskaitė thinks that the parliamentary investigation will not have any legal consequences "apart from political scandals and political bubbles".

"Great expectations have been raised. Everyone is waiting, everyone is discussing, but I'd like to say very clearly: there will be no legal consequences," she said.

The head of state also said that the findings of the parliamentary investigation would be used in the criminal case involving MG Baltic, the Liberal Movement and the Labor Party to prove that the process is political.

Therefore, both the State Security Department, which makes decisions the declassification of materials, and the Seimas committee, which discusses whether to make these materials public, must take the situation very responsibly, Grybauskaitė said.

"Everything that is declassified by the State Security Department or law enforcement agencies can and will definitely be used for defense," she said.

The first hearing in the political corruption case at the Vilnius Regional Court is scheduled for June 7. The parliamentary committee plans to adopt its findings next Wednesday.

Source: BNS
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