NSGK probe has drawbacks but was necessary, liberal leader says
The conclusions of the Lithuanian parliamentary Committee on National Security and Defence probe into business groups' influence on politics, approved on Wednesday, have drawbacks but the probe itself was necessary, Eugenijus Gentvilas, leader of the opposition Liberal Movement, says.
The MP, however, missed information on businesses' influence on other political parties.
"I wanted a comprehensive evaluation (...) for the Lithuanian Farmers and Greens Union's ties with Agrokoncernas (a business group controlled by LVŽS leader Ramūnas Karbauskis– BNS) to be evaluated, and also the conservative Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian Democrats' contacts with certain business groups were also analyzed in more detail," Gentvilas told BNS Lithuania.
He, nevertheless, said the NSGK probe was necessary, despite the fact the liberals' ties with the MG Baltic business group were mentioned in the probe conclusions. "We believe everyone needs a moment of truth," he said.
Gentvilas also said the investigation lacked a deeper analysis of Russian business's influence on political processes in Lithuania.
The NSGK concluded that MG Baltic started implementing a political scenario over a decade ago, aimed at creating a new liberal party matching its interests. The parliamentary committee states the Liberal Movement has close ties with MG Baltic executives.
The State Security Department's report on MG Baltic's influence on political processes, published several week ago, states that the creation of the Liberal Movement was MG Baltic's project. It also says the party is controlled by the business group.
Gentvilas says the conclusions' formulation regarding the Liberal Movement was later watered down as much as possible. "Of course, I could say I would have wanted it to be even softer, but when one or two of our leaders are today being accused of alleged corrupt relations with MG Baltic, our any demand to further soften the formulation would be linked to this fact," the MP said.
A Vilnius court will start hearing a political corruption case in June, with MG Baltic's former vice president Raimondas Kurlianskis, the Liberal Movement and several former and existing lawmakers among the defendants.