Lithuanian govt might turn to law enforcement after NSGK probe – PM

Saulius Skvernelis

Lithuania's government might turn to law enforcement following the parliamentary Committee on National Security and Defense's (NSGK) probe into illicit influence on state institutions and politicians as "intervention" might be needed, Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis says.

"It’s not a law enforcement investigation but if it's stated that an intervention is needed and there are proposals to turn to law enforcement over one or another direction of the probe, the parliamentary committee will do that or, if the government is asked to do so, we'll do it," the prime minister told journalists on Wednesday.

The NSGK is set to approve its probe's conclusions later on Wednesday.

According to Skvernelis, the parliamentary investigation was not aimed at "looking for the guilty, diminishing opponents or persecuting someone" but at identifying "a perverse practice" that has developed over several years due to non-transparent ties among politicians, businessman and the media, and businesses' influence on politicians. It should also lead to recommendations to the government on what should be done to avoid this in the future.

Skvernelis also underlined that it was a political, not law enforcement, probe, therefore, the committee did not interfere with law enforcement's work. The head of government also called attempts to speak about responsibility of heads of intelligence and law enforcement institutions unacceptable.

"This process also included law enforcement institutions. Therefore, the attempt to involve intelligence or law enforcement institutions, their heads into this process, persecute them and speak about their dismissal, responsibility is unacceptable. The government and I, as head of government, will do everything to prevent involvement of special services into politicizing and politics," Skvernelis said.

Source: BNS
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