SEIMAS OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
ON THE CONCLUSION OF THE PARLIAMENTARY INVESTIGATION OF ACTIVITIES OF THE STATE SECURITY DEPARTMENT AS CONDUCTED BY THE COMMITTEE ON NATIONAL SECURITY AND DEFENCE OF THE SEIMAS OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
19 December 2006 No X-990 Vilnius
The Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania r e s o l v e s:
To approve the conclusion of the parliamentary investigation of activities of the State Security Department as conducted by the Committee on National Security and Defence of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania.
The Resolution shall enter into force as of adoption thereof.
SPEAKER OF THE SEIMAS VIKTORAS MUNTIANAS
Resolution No X-990 of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania
of 19 December 2006
conclusion of the parliamentary investigation of activities of the State Security Department as conducted by the Committee on National Security and Defence of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania
In compliance the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania and in performance of the functions assigned by subparagraph 9 of Article 49 “Powers of Seimas Committees” of the Statute of the Seimas (“[…] on their own initiative or upon the instruction of the Seimas, to perform parliamentary investigation of individual problems […]”), the Seimas Committee on National Security and Defence (hereinafter referred as the “Committee”) commenced on 4 September 2006 on its own initiative a parliamentary investigation of activities of the State Security Department (hereinafter referred to as the “SSD” or the “Department”) and, upon the entry into force of Seimas Resolution No X-823 of 28 September 2006 “On Assignment of the Committee on National Security and Defence of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania to Conduct a Parliamentary Investigation of the Activities of the State Security Department” and based on the Republic of Lithuania Law on Ad Hoc Investigation Commissions of the Seimas as well as with participation of Chairman of the Committee Algimantas Matulevičius (since 19 October 2006), Deputy Chairman of the Committee Algis Kašėta, members of the Committee Andrius Baranauskas (before 23 October 2006), Rimantas Bašys, Vytautas Bogušis, Rasa Juknevičienė, Romualda Kšanienė (since 24 October 2006), Juozas Olekas (only on 22 November 2006), Saulius Pečeliūnas, Milda Petrauskienė, Alvydas Sadeckas (the Chairman of the Committee before 18 October 2006), Rimantas Smetona, Skirmantas Pabedinskas (withdrew as of 22 September 2006 from participation in the investigation due to a possible conflict of interest);
with participation of Acting Senior Adviser of the Committee Vitalijus Dmitrijevas, Adviser Jolita Zabarauskaitė (since 17 October 2006), Chief Specialist of the Legal Department of the Office of the Seimas Justas Musteikis;
with the secretaries – Assistant of the Committee Asta Markevičienė and Assistant of the Committee Agnė Silickienė,
1) the progress of reorganisation and implementation of the strategy of the State Security Department;
2) the nature of the personnel management policy of the State Security Department, the moral climate at the State Security Department;
3) the reasons for and circumstances of the transfer of Vytautas Pociūnas from the office of the head of a board of the State Security Department to the consulate of the Republic of Lithuania in Grodno;
4) the possible existence of the problem of politicisation of officers of the State Security Department;
5) the problem of compromise of official information;
6) the nature of relations of the State Security Department with other state institutions;
7) the expedience of improvement of legal regulation of activities of the State Security Department;
8) the type of information accumulated or prepared at the State Security Department during 2004-2006 on the possible corruption links of high-ranking state officials or on the possible influence of institutions, establishments and persons of foreign countries on them;
9) the possible influence of politicians, business or other interest groups on the activities of officers of the State Security Department and their decisions.
Having constitutional powers and in light of the matter of state importance, the Committee exercised parliamentary scrutiny of the SSD with a view to providing an exhaustive and objective reply to the questions formulated in the Seimas resolution and determine the progress in respect of performance by the State Security Department of the functions assigned to it and implementation of the powers stipulated in the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania and laws. Taking account of the ruling of the Constitutional Court of 21 November 2006, the Committee used the entire information accumulated during the parliamentary investigation for drawing generalisations and conclusions regarding tendencies and problems of activities of the SSD. The Committee invited officers of the SSD and other persons to give testimony, analysed their evidence, aimed at familiarising with documents and obtaining the information relating to organisation of the work of the SSD irrespective of whether the resolution of appropriate issues, such as, inter alia, determination of the structure of this institution, establishment and liquidation of structural divisions, recruitment of employees and their dismissal or transfer to another position, removal from office and other issues relating to the career of employees of the institution, their legal status, etc., falls within the sphere of competence of heads of the SSD. The parliamentary investigation as conducted by the Committee also required the material of the investigations conducted or being conducted by the SSD, familiarisation with which would not prejudice the values stipulated in, defended and protected by the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, also unfinished pre-trial and operational investigations.
The Committee heard testimonies of 33 current and 4 former officers of the SSD, Members of the Seimas Andrius Kubilius, Jurgis Razma, Antanas Valionis, former Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Albinas Januška, former Director General of the SSD, Ambassador of the Republic of Lithuania to the Kingdom of Spain Mečys Laurinkus, Consul General of the Republic of Lithuania in Grodno Daiva Mockuvienė, journalist of the Lithuanian Television Joana Lapėnienė, brother of perished SSD officer Vytautas Pociūnas Algimantas Pociūnas and widow of the perished Liudvika Pociūnienė, signatory of 11 March Act Algirdas Endriukaitis.
1. Progress of reorganisation and implementation of the strategy of the State Security Department
Reorganisation of the SSD commenced in 1998. In order to improve the activities and reform administration of the institution, the Department performed structural restructuring: dissolved former and established new divisions, appropriately reassigned functions within the SDD, restructured individual divisions of the SSD.
The structure of the SSD is being altered in compliance with subparagraphs 6 and 7 of paragraph 3 of Article 4 of the Statute of the State Security Department and implementing provisions of subparagraph 1 of paragraph 3 of Article 8 of the Law on Civil Service and decisions approved by minutes of the performance appraisal commission of the SSD. Changes in the structure of the SSD and the model of strategic planning and administration of the SSD was approved in 2004 by the collegium of the SSD.
In 2004, the Committee approved the SSD strategy for 2005-2008. In 2006, the Committee gave a positive assessment of implementation of the SSD strategy upon familiarisation with the annual activity report of the SSD.
During the reorganisation, heads of the SSD aimed at restructuring this institution in line with the model characteristic of the special services of NATO and the EU countries, set priorities of activities of the SSD and clearly define directions of work, the functions performed, improve co-ordination of the work of central and territorial offices of the SSD and resolving other issues of relevance for the activities of the Department.
During the investigation, some SSD officers giving a testimony to the Committee expressed their opinion regarding reorganisation of certain divisions of the SSD and presented their versions of the course of reorganisation.
It was established that an investigation conducted by one board of the SSD on the possible links of companies with Russia’s special services and possible influence on state officials and politicians had been considered by heads of the SSD as falling outside the competence of this board. Such an opinion was expressed by the heads after the head of the board, his deputy and the head of a unit testified about the mentioned investigation to the Committee, although until then the heads had regularly received information about the conducted investigation, signed appropriate decisions in its respect, assessed it, presented proposals, and expressed interest in the content of operational information.
During the investigation, the Committee also obtained the data that in certain cases, limits of the competence of boards of the SSD were broadened without justified grounds while investigating, hence not all investigations by the SSD comply with the functions assigned to the Department.
In the course of the parliamentary investigation, the Committee also drew attention to the information received regarding an assignment by the head of one of SSD divisions to territorial divisions whose certain elements or the means of whose execution could be viewed as violation of the rights of citizens to private life and exceeding of the competence of the SSD.
The SSD must precisely define the functions assigned to it. It must be sufficiently clear for SSD officers that their actions fall within the sphere of competence of the SSD.
Some SSD officers have doubts regarding the validity of dissolution of the Vilnius branch of the SSD and whether a decision on its dissolution was taken upon proper preparation. Dissolution of this division is related to the establishment of another board of the SSD, however, following the establishment of units at appropriate boards of the SSD (upon distribution of the functions previously performed by the Vilnius branch), these divisions were not ensured proper provision.
Some SSD employees have the impression that in certain cases, reorganisation could have been used for unjustified dismissal or transfer to another position of the employees who have displeased heads of the SSD, which could have had an adverse effect on the quality of work of the SSD.
Prolonged structural reforms, insufficiently defined functions, lengthy drafting of regulations of divisions have resulted in conflict situations between heads of SSD divisions and subordinate officers. Attention should be drawn to the insufficient quality of administration, absence of meetings of the collegium of the SSD performing the function of the advisory institution to the Director General of the SSD for several years, infrequent visits of deputies of the Director General of the SSD in structural divisions of the SSD, lack of defined limits of responsibility for the decisions taken by the Director General. This has an adverse effect on the efficiency and results of SSD work.
The SSD is facing significant and objective problems – a shortage of specialists of certain fields is related to low work remuneration of SSD officers, there is also a shortage of the premises adapted for activities of the SSD.
On the basis of the material obtained during the investigation and evidence of witnesses, the Committee is drawing the following conclusions:
1. The process of structural reforms at the SSD had been excessively prolonged, which affected the work of some divisions of the Department. The SSD must provide for a specific time limit for implementation of reorganisation, complete administration and structural reforms within a shorter period of time.
2. Heads of the SSD must ensure that goals and directions of reorganisation are sufficiently clear for officers of the SSD divisions undergoing reorganisation. A more efficient use could be made of the collegium of the SSD to this end.
3. In certain cases, the limits of activities of the SSD are broadened without due grounds and untypical functions are performed.
2. Nature of the personnel management policy of the State Security Department, the moral climate at the State Security Department
A large number of competent officers capable of a successful and professional performance of the tasks assigned to them work at the Department. However, the parliamentary investigation has revealed certain problems of personnel management by the SSD.
The Committee stresses that particular attention must be devoted to selection of candidates to the SSD and its divisions, their verification and subsequent suitability. General requirements for candidates to SSD officers are set forth by Articles 13, 14, 15 and 16 of the Statute of the State Security Department. The Director General of the SSD may also set forth additional requirements for certain job positions.
The SSD has in place a procedure for appraising the performance of officers and granting qualification categories, however, it lacks a clear system of officers’ career that would provide SSD officers with equal opportunities in seeking higher positions taking into account their abilities, qualification and experience. In certain cases, it is not clear what criteria serve as the basis for transferring SSD officers from one division of the SSD to another and appointing them to higher, leading or lower positions. Some officers giving their testimony to the Committee claimed that there were cases when qualified and experienced employees had been forced, without due grounds, directly or indirectly, to leave the service or move to another division of the SSD.
The Committee has established the cases when heads of the SSD, in delaying the solution of problems of separate divisions of the SSD, created preconditions for transferring officers to other positions, which were not always well justified.
In a statutory organisation, the principles of subordination are prerequisite. The Committee believes that a more frequent direct communication of heads of the SSD with lower ranking officers would, in certain situations, help the heads of the SSD to take more co-ordinated and well-weighted decisions and would improve the moral climate at the entire Department. Comprehensive investment in human resources, good psychological climate must be among the key priorities in a democratic civil special service.
Some SSD employees indicated the cases when the officers who had been promoted or given positive appraisal of performance were removed from the investigations conducted by them without due grounds.
Some SSD officers who gave their testimony to the Committee claimed that heads of the SSD spoke to them before their testimony at the Committee, and these conversations were seen by the officers as an attempt by the heads to exert influence on their testimony.
The Committee points out that the moral climate at the SSD has been significantly influenced by the removal from office of the three SSD officers giving testimony to the Committee.
Due to the specific nature of the work of security officers, the requirements set forth for protection of secrets, also the stress situations relating to performance of their duties, the work with SSD officers must be organised in a targeted and systematic manner. Heads of the SSD should create proper working conditions for the security officers and lay down clear criteria for performance appraisal of employees so that they are aware of the moral, professional or other qualities for which some employees are promoted, while others are given a negative appraisal and punished.
During the investigation, the Committee established that the moral climate at the SSD is adversely affected also by the following circumstances relating to heads of the SSD:
1) during the Revival, i.e., on 26 December 1989, Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius was entered onto a list of KGB reserve officers (according to conclusions of the Seimas ad hoc commission approved by Seimas Resolution No X-135 of 17 March 2005);
2) Deputy Director General of the SSD Dainius Dabašinskas acquired real property in Turniškės and was imposed a penalty – a severe reprimand – for creation of a negative public opinion about the Department or officers of the Department (according to conclusions of the Seimas ad hoc commission approved by Seimas Resolution No X-873 of 19 October 2006);
3) Deputy Director General of the SSD Darius Jurgelevičius spoke publicly in a non-ethical manner about the perished officer of the Department;
4) Head of a board Vytautas Damulis announced his official mobile phone number in the Internet for private and commercial purposes of rural tourism, which served as the ground for imposition a penalty on him by heads of the SSD.
In light of these observations made by the Committee, the Committee took into account the hindrances to exercise parliamentary scrutiny as established during the parliamentary investigation, the status of heads of the SSD and the requirements set forth for these positions by legal acts.
On the basis of the material obtained during the investigation and testimony of witnesses, the Committee is drawing the following conclusions:
1. The SSD personnel management policy contains shortcomings and unresolved problems. There is a lack of clear limits of responsibility for the decisions taken between the Director General of the SSD and his deputies as well as heads of boards.
2. A clearly defined system of employee assignment, career and personnel development is not in place.
3. Psychological tension is felt among employees. Actions of heads of the SSD, namely, removal of officers of one board of the SSD from office during the parliamentary investigation after they gave their testimony to the Committee, had an adverse impact on the moral climate at the Department.
4. A gap between heads of the SSD and regional divisions hinders focusing on work at the SSD.
5. The publicly known circumstances as mentioned above and relating to head of the SSD Arvydas Pocius and his deputies Dainius Dabašinskas and Darius Jurgelevičius adversely affect the moral climate at the SSD.
3. Reasons for and circumstances of the transfer of Vytautas Pociūnas from the office of the head of a board of the State Security Department to the consulate of the Republic of Lithuania in Grodno
The Committee established that Vytautas Pociūnas was appointed to the office of the head of a board of the SSD in May 2004. He replaced in this office Linas Petronis. The board investigated the processes taking place in the transport and energy sector and being likely to adversely affect the national security of the Republic of Lithuania.
Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius explained during the investigation that this board had been reorganised with a view to revising functions of the board and prevent their duplication. According to Arvydas Pocius, in the process of improvement of the work of the board heads of the SSD continuously required from Vytautas Pociūnas a better way of attaining the strategic goals of the board. In the opinion of the Director General, reforms in the board headed by Vytautas Pociūnas were being carried out, however, some territorial divisions complained about their slow pace and lack of smoothness.
Arvydas Pocius also indicated that in summer 2005, Vytautas Pociūnas mentioned in conversations with him that he was experiencing difficulties in being in charge of the board. During the term of Pociūnas’ office, several employees moved from the board to other divisions or left the SSD. They indicated to Mr. Pocius the inability of heads of the board to clearly formulate specific tasks for subordinate officers as one of the principal reasons for their resignation. Some SSD officers claimed that they felt their work had been deliberately given a negative evaluation by Vytautas Pociūnas.
During the investigation, the Committee received the information that in 2005, a board led by Vytautas Pociūnas was characterised by a psychological climate unfavourable for efficient work, because a conflict arose between the head of the board and his deputy. In the opinion of some interviewed SSD officers, a tension between two heads of the board could have arisen due to their different views of some aspects of activities of the board, however, in the opinion of others, it could have been escalated artificially, and heads of the SSD deliberately avoided resolution of arising problems. Some SSD officers giving their testimony to the Committee indicated as the principal reason the lack of support of Vytautas Pociūnas by heads of the SSD. Deputy Director General Darius Jurgelevičius, who was responsible for the board, was particularly passive in this respect.
During the investigation, the Committee also established that the board had failed to approve a list of staffand positions for a long period of time, although head of the board Vytautas Pociūnas repeatedly applied to heads of the SSD regarding this. Therefore, dissatisfaction of officers could have arisen within the board. The heads of the SSD failed to approve regulations of the board for a long time, but the regulations were approved shortly and without any essential amendments after Vytautas Pociūnas was transferred to diplomatic service and a new head of the board was appointed.
Under such circumstances, Vytautas Pociūnas as a statutory officer was forced to select whether to go to Georgia or Grodno.
Heads of the SSD described Grodno as an important location, hence an experienced officer had to be appointed for service there. However, testimonies of the persons closely communicating with Vytautas Pociūnas make it possible to conclude that there was no serious work for Vytautas Pociūnas in Grodno, he considered this to be a forced leave.
The Committee was given testimonies that one of heads of the division working together with Vytautas Pociūnas and being in charge of railways and other transport fields as well as investigating the “2K” project was also forced to resign by heads of the SSD. Upon Darius Jurgelevičius’ consenting to the resignation and promising the recommendation provided for by laws regarding employment with one of state enterprises, the heads of the SSD subsequently deliberately prevented this person from taking up employment not only with the mentioned state enterprise, but also with private companies. Approximately one and a half months prior to his death, Vytautas Pociūnas stated: “[…] I will no longer keep silent and will make sure that everybody knows everything […]”.
Member of the Seimas Jurgis Razma claimed that prior to leaving Lithuania, Vytautas Pociūnas requested to meet with him and informed him that he was leaving service at the SSD against his will. Vytautas Pociūnas also told him the reason for the dispatch, that is, Arvydas Pocius was no longer able to control the situation at the Department and a considerable influence was exercised on the Department by Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Albinas Januška through Darius Jurgelevičius, who had been proposed to the office of Deputy Director General of the SSD by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Member of the Seimas Andrius Kubilius stated at a meeting of the Committee that Vytautas Pociūnas, who had visited him before the departure, claimed that he was being removed from significant investigations. Vytautas Pociūnas also told him that he was a statutory officer, hence he requested not to raise the issue of his dispatch before heads of the SSD.
Seimas Member and former Minister of Foreign Affairs Antanas Valionis, who gave his testimony at a meeting of the Committee, claimed that, in his opinion, Vytautas Pociūnas “had not been expelled” to service in Belarus. He claimed that he knew that the issue of dispatching Vytautas Pociūnas was being considered as early as during the period when the SSD was headed by Mečys Laurinkus.
Relatives of Vytautas Pociūnas claimed that Vytautas Pociūnas was dispatched to the service against his will. They believe that his dispatch was an “official lynching”. Following Pociūnas’ burial, heads and officers of the SSD did not communicate with Liudvika Pociūnienė. She and other relatives of Vytautas Pociūnas did not receive any attention of heads of the SSD while circumstances of personal life or death were being made public and were not given clarifications or apology regarding defamatory statements in the press.
Other current and former SSD officers as well as family members and relatives of Vytautas Pociūnas claimed to the Committee that the fact of dispatching Vytautas Pociūnas was, in their opinion, his removal from the significant investigations conducted by the board in the fields of transport and energy.
In 2003, the board prepared and submitted to top state officials and the Seimas Committee on National Security and Defence a certificate on the project “Initiative 2K” (hereinafter referred to as “2K”). This certificate was prepared by Vytautas Pociūnas, who then held the office of the head of a unit of the board, in conjunction with employees of his unit. The material obtained during the Committee’s investigation enables to claim that opinions of the SSD and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which was the initiator of the project “2K”, were essentially different. In the opinion of some persons giving their testimony to the Committee, this could have been one of the reasons why Vytautas Pociūnas and some other employees considering transport problems were expelled from the SSD board upon consolidatio of the influence of officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on the SSD.
The totality of available information enables to assume that the “2K” project was imposed on Lithuania in order to weaken our country’s vigilance and win time. Vytautas Pociūnas proved to be sufficiently insightful to warn of this in the “2K” certificate prepared together with his colleagues.
On the basis of the information collected during the investigation, the Committee makes the assumption that a deliberate or non-deliberate expulsion from the SSD of the professional employees having a considerable work experience has a weakening effect on the Department. An example of such actions can be a hasty dispatch of Vytautas Pociūnas, who was in charge of a highly significant field of SSD work, to the diplomatic mission of the Republic of Lithuania in Grodno. The totality of the information available to the Committee allows to claim that considerable responsibility for the difficulties arising in the activities of a board of the SSD led by Vytautas Pociūnas should be assumed by Deputy Director General of the SSD Darius Jurgelevičius who was in charge of this board and Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius.In light of the totality of events and information, an assumption may be made that Vytautas Pociūnas was removed from the responsible office at the SSD in order to prolong the significant investigations conducted by him in the transport and energy sectors in respect of the country’s national security.
On the basis of the material obtained during the investigation and testimony of witnesses, the Committee is drawing the following conclusions:
1. Heads of the SSD were aware of the existing inappropriate situation in the board upon appointment of Vytautas Pociūnas as its head, however, they delayed the taking of appropriate decisions. This increased a tension in mutual relations of officers of the board and stimulated opposition. In its turn, this adversely affected the efficiency and quality of the work of the board. An indecisive and delayed resolution of problems showed the insufficient managerial capabilities of heads of the SSD.
2. The Committee assumes that the investigation concerning the 2K project as conducted by a board of the SSD led by Vytautas Pociūnas could have been related to Vytautas Pociūnas’ dispatch to diplomatic service in Grodno.
3. It is necessary to improve the legal acts regulating procedures of transferral of SSD officers to diplomatic service with a view to achieving clarity in respect of their legal status and ensuring related social guarantees.
4. The Law on Civil Service and the Statute of the State Security Department do not separate the procedures of transfer of an employee to another position at his own initiative or at the initiative of the administration.
4. Possible existence of the problem of politicisation of officers of the State Security Department
The laws of the Republic of Lithuania regulating activities of the SSD and other statutory institutions and their officers stipulate prohibitions of participation in political activities.
Paragraph 8 of Article 18 of the Law on the State Security Department provides for a prohibition in respect of officers of the SSD to hold an office subject to election or appointment, work at business, commercial or other private establishments, also occupy a pedagogical and scientific position, with the exception of the cases when this has been agreed upon with the Director General of the SSD in accordance with the procedure laid down by the Statute of the State Security Department.
Subparagraph 1 of paragraph 1 of Article 11 of the Statute of the State Security Department stipulates that officers of the SSD shall be prohibited from “holding membership in and being sponsors of political parties and political organisations or participating in activities thereof as well as participating in any other political activities.”
Analysis of the legal acts currently in force makes it possible to associate the concept of politicisation with participation in “any other political activities” (subparagraph 1 of paragraph 1 of Article 11 of the Statute of the SSD).
Although the officers giving testimony to the Committee claimed that they had not noticed the problem of politicisation at the divisions of the SSD represented by them, it should be mentioned that Damulis phoned Member of the Seimas Jurgis Razma when the issue of appointment of Viktoras Muntianas to the office of the Speaker of the Seimas was being considered at the Seimas and informed about biography facts of the candidate’s father. Following this incident, Damulis, as he stated himself, informed Director General Arvydas Pocius of such his conduct.The material collected during the investigation makes it possible to claim that Damulis understood that he had acted inappropriately by interfering in the political process. It should be noted that Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius failed to assess the conduct by Vytautas Damulis in any manner.
During the parliamentary investigation conducted by the Committee, Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius addressed by a public letter of 17 October 2006 the President of the Republic, the Speaker of the Seimas, the Prime Minister and the Seimas Committee on National Security and Defence. In it, he stated his opinion regarding the analytical certificates requested by the Committee. The letter was first made public, and only subsequently transferred to the Committee.
The public letter contained a statement which caused a considerable reaction of the public: “The information contained in these specific certificates may affect some influential members of the political parties of the Seimas opposition and position as well as their sponsors, state officials. However, this will not be true. This will not be true until it is proved. If it is disclosed, it may be left unproved.” The Committee considers these statements by Arvydas Pocius as disrespect for parliamentary democracy, certain efforts to exert influence on the members of the Committee conducting parliamentary investigation or even the entire Seimas.
Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius and his deputies were under the obligation to voluntarily co-operate, during the parliamentary investigation, with the Committee conducting the investigation rather than express their dissatisfaction publicly. Having initially officially informed the Committee about a decision to provide the information as requested by the Committee and relevant for the investigation being conducted as well as accumulated and prepared at the Department on the possible corruption links of high-ranking state officials or on the possible impact of institutions, establishments and persons of foreign countries on them, Arvydas Pocius subsequently refused to do so. Under such circumstances, some actions of the Director General of the SSD even created a tension between individual state institutions.
It should be noted that the Committee has obtained the testimonies which raise the doubts that some investigations of the SSD may be conducted taking into consideration political situation.
On the basis of the material obtained during the investigation nand testimony of witnesses, the Committee is drawing the following conclusions:
1. Certain features established during the parliamentary investigation allow to make an assumption that some SSD investigations and actions of heads and officers in some cases could be conducted or their results could be used for the benefit of certain political groups, in other cases – to influence the political groups or politicians themselves.
2. Attention should be drawn to the public conduct of heads of the SSD during the parliamentary investigation and their unwillingness to co-operate with the Seimas Committee conducting the parliamentary investigation. This should be attributed not only to focusing on politics, but also to disrespect of parliamentary democracy, a certain pressure which is incompatible with statutory duties. The mentioned actions by the Director General of the SSD, namely, public statements regarding the investigation conducted by the Committee, may mislead the public and form a basis for unnecessary interpretations.
3. The Committee has a ground for believing that circulation of the public letter was a deliberate and incorrect political step by Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius, which caused his confrontation with the Committee and possibly also with the entire Seimas.
5. Problem of compromise of official information
The Law on State and Official Secrets establishes the grounds of and procedure for classifying, storing, using, declassifying of information comprising a state or official secret, co-ordinating and controlling protective actions and sets forth minimum requirements for the separate fields of protection of classified information.
The SSD basically undertakes appropriate measures for the protection of classified information, but the investigation conducted by the Committee has revealed the problems of activities of the SSD that result in shortcomings in this field. The data obtained during the investigation allows to state that there were several cases when the official information, including the classified one, available to the SSD was made public. The Committee notes that a compromise, also a public one, of the SSD official information, including the classified one, was observed both before the initiation of the investigation conducted by the Committee and during the investigation.
One of the divisions of the SSD investigating cases of unlawful use or compromise of official information is not capable of completely fulfilling the tasks delegated to it.
In the course of the investigation conducted by the Committee, a statement that “the SSD is conducting a comprehensive investigation on deliberate illegal transfer and disclosure of secret operational information to the citizens of Lithuania and other countries and potential falsification of such data” was published on the official website of the SSD. In the context of this information, it was publicly announced about the removal from office of the heads of the SSD counterintelligence. Nevertheless, such action of heads of the SSD cannot be evaluated straightforwardly: on the one hand, as an attempt to investigate an allegedly committed criminal act and, on the other hand, as discrediting of the SSD officers whose testimony was unfavourable for the Department.
During the investigation, the Committee received the data allowing to make an assumption that secret information is allegedly disclosed by the SSD to unauthorised persons. For example, it is known that the SSD provided secret documents to the State Property Fund despite the fact that at that time head of this institution Povilas Milašauskas was not authorised to handle secret information.
The Committee cannot either confirm or deny the information appearing in the press about the events that have recently taken place at the Klaipėda branch of the SSD. The Committee has established that, upon evaluating the data presented by the officers, a part of the information that had been made public (the fact that the officers who were investigating counterintelligence activity in Klaipėda were unexpectedly withdrawn before the end on the investigation by the former head of the SSD Mečys Laurinkus, and the conclusions of the investigation have not been drawn yet) proved to be true, but the Committee does not have sufficient data to claim that the investigation was terminated as a result of blackmailing the former head with allegedly available compromising information.
Member of the Seimas Andrius Kubilius also gave testimony about the alleged compromise of information by reporting about his conversations with Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius and SSD officer Audrius Penkauskas that took place at their initiative soon after the death of Vytautas Pociūnas in Belarus when Lithuanian law enforcement institutions had already started a pre-trial investigation. A conversation between the SSD officer Audrius Penkauskas and member of the Committee Rasa Juknevičienė also took place. Andrius Kubilius and Rasa Juknevičienė told that certain circumstances of the death of Vytautas Pociūnas that were later published by one national daily newspaper had been disclosed to them. According to the data available to the Committee, Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius was talking with a journalist of the said daily newspaper in the premises of the SSD from 8 p.m. till 2 a.m. before the article appeared in the press. He did not deny this fact, however, he refused to present to the Committee the data of the visitors’ registration journal of the SSD. Moreover, the Director General of the SSD denies that he talked with Audrius Penkauskas about the versions and circumstances of the death of Vytautas Pociūnas despite the fact that Audrius Penkauskas gave testimony that it was after the conversation with Arvydas Pocius and his Deputy Dainius Dabašinskas that he was instructed to pay a visit to the politicians who were most actively posing questions concerning the death of Vytautas Pociūnas and the circumstances of his dispatch to Grodno.
The Committee notes that seeking to prevent compromise of official information, targeted work with the personnel of the SSD in all the chains as well as improvement of the moral climate at the Department and increasing of the motivation of officers are required, because the human factor remains one of the major problems. Heads of the SSD must pay more attention to illegal use or compromise of official information, it is necessary to strengthen the internal control of the SSD.
On the basis of the material obtained during the investigation and testimony of witnesses, the Committee is drawing the following conclusions:
1. The SSD fails to ensure the adequately protection of official information, including the classified one.
2. The SSD must provide for specific measures to strengthen the protection of the information comprising a state or official secret, strictly comply with the procedure for classifying and declassifying and strengthen the capacities and capabilities of the SSD internal security – the Immunity Service.
6. Nature of relations of the State Security Department with other state institutions
Co-operation of the SSD with the Government in solving the issues related to ensuring of state security has improved.
Under the Law on the State Security Department, the Statute of the State Security Department approved by a law of the Republic of Lithuania and the Statute of the Seimas, the SSD, as an institution, is accountable to the Seimas and the President of the Republic. The Security Department is headed by the Director General. He is appointed and dismissed by the President of the Republic subject to the approval of the Seimas (paragraph 1 of Article 10 of the Law on the State Security Department).
It is stipulated in Article 37 of the Law on the State Security Department that the parliamentary scrutiny of the SSD is carried out by the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania.
Article 8 of the Law on the State Security Department provides that the SSD “shall provide information, conclusions as well as recommendations on the issues of state security to the President of the Republic, the Seimas, the Government and, where necessary, to other state institutions”. Information to other institutions was provided by the Director General or an authorised employee of the SSD, upon receiving the permission of the Director General. In providing information to heads of other state institutions, the SSD acted in accordance with the principle “it is essential to know”. The Committee has failed to receive convincing arguments whether the information that is essential to know for the President of the Republic, the Government and heads of the Seimas is sufficiently comprehensive and objective and whether it is presented timely.
The Committee has established that the SSD co-operates and provides information to various state institutions. The SSD maintains especially close relations with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Police Department and the Customs Department. Nevertheless, it is possible to state that sufficiently intensive relations determined by the interests of national security are maintained not with all institutions.
The passive role of the SSD in June 2006 when the Seimas was considering amendments to the Railway Transport Code concerning liberalisation of the transportation of cargoes by the Lithuanian railways should be treated as a negative case. Certain business structures were exerting a considerable pressure on the Seimas through the Ministry of Transport to allow private carriers to take over transportation of cargoes to Kaliningrad. If this had happened, the Klaipėda port and the Lithuanian railways would have suffered considerable losses and it would have become more difficult to control military transit. Thus, the SSD failed to perform its direct function – to timely inform state institutions (in this case – the Seimas) about possible negative consequences for the country’s national security.
The SSD has on several occasions failed to show initiative to provide preventive information to institutions within their sphere of competence. Heads of the SSD view many operational investigations as potential pre-trial investigations and thus in some cases the collected and processed data are kept unused for an indefinite period of time. The heads of the SSD often used to inform heads of state institutions orally and give them access to certificates, but did not record who had been given access and to what particular information. Not always the information from the SSD was received on time.
The Committee has doubts regarding the legality and purposes of transferring Deputy Director General of the SSD Darius Jurgelevičius from the office of the Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the office of the Deputy Director General of the SSD, where this was not provided for by the legal acts then in force, as well as the legality of a bonus paid to him for his diplomatic rank.
On the basis of the material obtained during the investigation and testimony of witnesses, the Committee is drawing the following conclusions:
1. The relations of the SSD with state institutions are not sufficiently efficient. Information relations between the SSD and other state institutions are not defined, which could protect these institutions from taking potentially wrong decisions concerning the interests of national security.
2. The Committee believes that the right of other state institutions to delegate their representatives to the SSD and other special services must be given up.
7. Expedience of improvement of legal regulation of the activities of the State Security Department
The main laws regulating the activity of the SSD are as follows: the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, the Law on the Basics of National Security, the Law on the State Security Department, the Statute of the State Security Department, the Law on Intelligence, the Law on Operational Activities, the Law on State and Official Secrets, the Law on Registering, Confession, Entry into Records and Protection of Persons who Have Admitted to Secret Collaboration with Special Services of the Former USSR and the Law on the Judgement upon the USSR State Security Committee (NKVD, NKGB, MGB, KGB) and the Current Activities of the Staff Employees of this Organisation. Contrary to many law enforcement institutions, the State Security Department is an independent institution accountable only to the Seimas and the President of the Republic. The head of this service is appointed and dismissed by the President of the Republic subject to the approval of the Seimas.
Having analysed legal regulation of the SSD activities and application of legal norms in practice, the Committee on National Security and Defence notes that:
1) due to an insufficiently detailed legal regulation, the control of the SSD, including the parliamentary scrutiny, that has been exercised until now should be considered as insufficient, sometimes – superficial and not disclosing the underlying reasons for the efficiency of the SSD activities and not solving the special problems of national importance;
2) it needs further discussion whether the Department should devote more attention to prevention and provide information about the possible threats to the country’s national security to other institutions or should perform also the functions of a pre-trial institution;
3) the procedure for temporarily removing from office the Director General of the SSD and Deputies of the Director General of the SSD is not regulated;
4) when establishing a prohibition for security officers to participate in “any other political activities”, the concept of “other political activities” is not explained;
5) the mechanism of state institutions’ need to receive the information on certain issues as accumulated and evaluated by the SST has not yet been established and monitoring of the results of using the information provided by the SSD to other institutions is performed insufficiently;
6) the procedure for furnishing operational information to state institutions and officials as provided for in the Law on Operational Activities has not yet been approved (under paragraph 3 of Article 17, “The procedure for furnishing classified operational information to state institutions and officials shall be laid down by the Government”);
7) the independence of the SSD, as an institution, stipulated in the laws needs further discussion as it results in shortcomings in supervision of control of the activities of the SSD.
The Committee is drawing a conclusion that, for the purpose of improving legal regulation of the activities of the SSD, it is expedient to:
1. Lay down a clear procedure for furnishing information by the SSD to other state institutions.
2. Impose an obligation on the Government to implement provisions of paragraph 3 of Article 17 of the Law on Operational Activities and prepare and approve the procedure for furnishing operational information to state institutions and officials.
3. Propose to the Seimas to:
3.1. taking into consideration the experience of NATO and EU Member States, present an appropriate legal definition of the place of the SSD among other institutions;
3.2. establish a more precise legal regulation of the parliamentary scrutiny of entities of operational activities;
3.3. regulate a possibility for statutory officers to directly inform the institutions exercising parliamentary scrutiny about service-related problems without addressing their immediate superiors as currently regulated;
3.4. more precisely regulate the procedure for using and destroying operational information;
3.5. provide for an opportunity for a person to receive information that operational actions were carried out in his respect and regulate the procedure for appealing against such actions;
3.6. regulate in a greater detail the procedure for appointment of the SSD officers to diplomatic service.
4. Improve the Law on the State Security Department, the Statute of the State Security Department and other legal acts by regulating a possibility for a temporary removal from office of the Director General of the SSD. More clearly regulate the rights, duties and responsibility of Deputies of the Director General of the SSD.
5. Improve the internal legal acts of the SSD in line with the requirements stipulated in laws regulating the activities of the SSD and operational activities.
8 and 9. Type of information accumulated or prepared at the State Security Department during 2004-2006 on the possible corruption links of high-ranking state officials or on the possible impact of institutions, establishments and persons of foreign countries on them;
the possible influence of politicians, business or other interest groups on the activities of officers of the State Security Department and their decisions
In compliance with the Constitution and laws, taking into consideration the rulings of the Constitutional Court of 13 May 2004 and 4 April 2006 concerning the compliance of certain Articles of the Statute of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania with the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania and the specific nature of the measures applied in the activities of the SSD, the Committee requested to submit the information required for the parliamentary investigation about the possible corruption links of high-ranking state officials or on the possible impact of institutions, establishments and persons of foreign countries on them as disclosed by the SSD during 2004-2006 and sought to establish the possible influence of politicians, business or other interest groups on the activities of the SSD officers and their decisions. The Committee did not pursue to nor intended to get access to the operational information collected during the investigations conducted by the SSD, to means of operational activities or operational cases.
The SSD presented to the Committee certificates about the potential violations of laws disclosed during 2004-2006, but no high-ranking state official is mentioned in them. A conclusion could be drawn that either there are no corrupt high-ranking officials in Lithuania, or there are such, but the SSD does not possess such information, or it does possess, but did not submit such information to the Committee.
Nevertheless, the Committee has received the information that the actions of certain entities were recorded during the investigations conducted by the SSD that may adversely affect the national security of the Republic of Lithuania and economy of the country. Some people who gave testimony at sittings of the Committee claimed to know about possible corrupt links of certain high-ranking officials and possible use of such links for exerting influence of special services of foreign countries on political and economic processes in the Republic of Lithuania.
Some people who gave testimony to the Committee claimed that certain secret information could have been provided to separate interest groups and that some SSD investigations or actions of officers could have been carried out for the benefit of certain interest groups or competing business structures. On the basis of the information collected during the investigation, the Committee makes an assumption that some or other interest groups may exert influence on the actions of some SSD officers.
Testimonies of some persons and the information presented in the media drew attention of the Committee to doubtful, for a state official, links of former Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Albinas Januška. Some SSD officers told the Committee that particularly close relations of Albinas Januška with one business company reached beyond the official scope of relations of officers with business representatives. According to the testimony of some persons, information about these links was included in the material prepared by the SSD. Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius refused to present this material to the Committee.
Albinas Januška denied the existence of any non-transparent links or actions. Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Member of the Seimas Antanas Valionis told that all official meetings of Albinas Januška with other persons, including the SSD officers, were taking place upon informing the Minister. According to Antanas Valionis, officials of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which he was then in charge of, did not carry out any unlawful actions. Arvydas Pocius, Dainius Dabašinskas and Antanas Valionis characterised Albinas Januška as a talented and professional statesman and denied the possibility of him having any doubtful links.
During the investigation, the Committee was informed that there existed the analytical certificates prepared by a division of the SSD in 2006 which analysed the processes of high importance for the national security of Lithuania and the country’s economy as well as possible corrupt links and actions of high-ranking state officials related to these processes. On 10 October 2006, the Committee requested the Director General of the SSD to present these certificates for investigation, as they, in the opinion of the Committee, would assist in formulating objective conclusions about the activities of the SSD taking into consideration the possible corrupt links of high-ranking state officials with persons and institutions from Lithuania or foreign states which are harmful to interests of the state, i.e., to evaluate whether the SSD was properly fulfilling the functions delegated to it by laws in this field of activity. On Friday, 13 October 2006, the Director General participated in a sitting of the Committee and told that he had these certificates available to him and would be able to present them to the Committee, but he would do so only upon preparation of appropriate explanations and commentaries, and that everything would be presented to the Committee at 8 a.m. on Monday, 16 October 2006. Nevertheless, the certificates were not presented at the agreed time and their presentation, allegedly for technical reasons, was postponed. Finally, Arvydas Pocius, upon arriving at a sitting of the Committee, informed that he refused to present the certificates. He based this decision on the arguments stipulated in letter No (66)-18-316 of the Legal Unit of the State Security Department of 16 October 2006 that by presenting to the Committee classified internal documents of operational activities, the SSD “would violate provisions of the Law on Operational Activities, as it is established in a conclusion of the commission set up by Order No 2-174RN of the Director General of the State Security Department of 12 October 2006 (conclusion No (K)-21-9S of 15 October 2006) that the documents under consideration were prepared on the basis of the information contained in operational investigation cases and obtained in the course of operational actions and on the basis of public information sources, hence, it cannot be attributed to the operational information that has fully proved out and thus it is not intended for other state institutions or state officials.”
The commission set up by Order No 2-174 (RN) of the Director General of the SSD of 12 October 2006, which was chaired by Deputy Director General of the SSD Andrius Tekorius, presented a conclusion that the mentioned certificates should not be presented to the Committee.
The SSD officers who gave testimony to the Committee stated that all analytical certificates of the SSD were prepared on the basis of the information established by means of operational investigations and public information sources, that such certificates did not contain the information that would allow identifying entities and means of operational activities, that these were the conclusions of the analytical nature summarising the information obtained through different means, and that the persons who are authorised to access secret information may familiarise with them, that presentation of these certificates to the Committee could not harm nor disrupt the operational or pre-trial investigations that have not yet been completed, and that these certificates might also be presented to other state institutions, such as the President of the Republic, the Seimas and the Government.
The following conclusion is given in letter No 420-S-136 of the Legal Department of the Office of the Seimas of 19 October 2006 addressed to the Seimas Committee on National Security and Defence: “[…] When conducting a parliamentary investigation, the Committees of the Seimas have the right to receive, in accordance with the procedure laid down by laws, from state government and administration institutions and other entities the documents, data and news as well as, subject to co-ordination with appropriate institutions, have the right to familiarise with the material or documents available to them, and such institutions have the right to give permission for the Committees of the Seimas to familiarise with such material or documents.”
The Committee points out that the SSD furnished various material, including the information contained in operational and pre-trial investigation cases, to other ad hoc commissions set up by the Seimas.
During the investigation, the Committee was informed about aspirations of a business company possibly linked with special services of Russia to influence the course of the investigation, and an attempt to compromise both individual members of the Committee and the very process through the mass media, especially through two daily newspapers and one commercial television. According to the data available to the Committee, heads of the SSD have received an analytical certificate on this issue. Officers of one of the boards, who had prepared the certificate, stated that the information collected by them was important from the point of view of national security, therefore, it was essential to familiarise with it the top officials of the country and the Committee conducting the investigation. The Committee does not possess data whether the Director General of the SSD has presented this information to the President, the Speaker of the Seimas and the Prime Minister.
Although Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius did not refuse that he had received such a certificate, he refused to present it to the Committee. Observing and evaluating the events that took place during the investigation, the attitude of certain means of the media, the pressure artificially created and imposed upon, the Committee is of the opinion that the information about the aspirations to exert influence on the investigation as presented by the officers who gave testimony to the Committee has proved to be true.
The refusal of Arvydas Pocius to submit an important analytical certificate about the attempts to exert influence on the parliamentary investigation provides a ground for believing that the Director General of the SSD may himself be related to these processes, which poses a threat to the national security of Lithuania.
While conducting the investigation, the Committee did not receive from the SSD the requested analytical certificates prepared on the basis of operational information, hence, it cannot, in principle, answer the question formulated by the Seimas whether corrupt links have been recorded in the material available to the SSD, although, the data collected during the interrogations allow to make an assumption that the SSD does possess information about corrupt links. Heads of the SSD did not deny the availability of such information to the SSD.
The Committee notes that the circumstances have been unfavourable for the investigation. Such circumstances emerged due to insufficient co-operation of heads of the SSD, in the first place, of its Director General Arvydas Pocius, with the Committee conducting the investigation. The refusal to present generalised analytical certificates and other information, public statements by the head of the Department with ambiguous references to the Members of the Seimas, removal of the officers who gave testimony to the Committee thus strengthening the atmosphere of mistrust and suspiciousness within the Department should be evaluated as an evident act hindering the Seimas in performance of its constitutional function of parliamentary scrutiny. This could be evaluated as an attempt to conceal the information unfavourable to heads of the SSD and some other high-ranking state officials.
Having conducted, under assignment of the Seimas, a parliamentary investigation of activities of the State Security Department and having investigated some fields of activities and some problems of the SSD, the Committee on National Security and Defence states that:
1. The State Security Department of the Republic of Lithuania is a state institution accountable to the Seimas and the President of the Republic, the purpose of which is to protect the sovereignty of the Republic of Lithuania and its constitutional order. The task of the State Security Department is to disclose, in a timely manner, the activities posing a threat to national security, inviolability and integrity of the territory, interests of the state, its economic and defence power, identify the reasons for and conditions of emergence of such activities and fight against them. These tasks are efficiently and responsibly performed by a large number of highly qualified, professional, patriotic and faithful to the oath sworn to the State of Lithuania SSD officers and employees.
2. In implementing the reforms provided for in the SSD strategy, it is essential to organise the work of the SSD in such a way as to make the goals of these reforms clear and comprehensible to SSD officers and thus ensure their active participation in the reformation process.
3. Heads of the SSD failed to devote sufficient attention to the personnel management policy and maintaining of a proper moral climate at the Department. There is no clearly regulated system of assignment of officers, career and personnel management. The heads of the SSD insufficiently co-ordinate the work of divisions of the Department.
4. Transfer of Vytautas Pociūnas from the office of the head of a board of the SSD to the diplomatic service at the consulate general of the Republic of Lithuania in Grodno has revealed that procedures of such a transfer are not regulated in detail in legal acts and hence give rise to preconditions for possibly non-transparent actions of heads of the SSD when considering the issues related to the career of SSD officers. The Committee makes an assumption that Vytautas Pociūnas could have been transferred to the diplomatic service due to the investigations conducted by the board headed by him in the field of energy and transport, which were possibly not welcomed by the heads of the SSD.
5. The public statements made by the head of the SSD are incompatible with a statutory position. Politicizing of the SSD creates conditions for discrediting the service and turning it into a tool for manipulation by separate political forces. The Committee states that it is necessary to further improve legal regulation seeking to avoid the emergence of such situation.
6. The SSD must solve the problem of compromise of official information.
7. The Committee has failed to receive convincing arguments whether the information that is essential to know by the President of the Republic, the Government and the Seimas is presented in a sufficiently comprehensive, objective and timely manner. Seeking for efficient relations of the SSD with other state institutions and ensuring the interests of state security, a system of formation of the need of state institutions for information from the SSD has to be developed, and the legal acts regulating in detail the furnishing of such information to other state institutions have to be drafted.
8. The Committee has available to it the data allowing to claim that in performing the tasks assigned to it, the SSD has accumulated various information about possible manifestations of corruption in the civil service, including that of high-ranking state officials. In the opinion of the Committee, this information should be analysed and cannot remain without appropriate legal or political evaluation.
9. The Committee believes that the SSD fails to ensure transparency of personal relations of officers with political, business or interest groups, hence, there may arise preconditions for selfish goals not related to interests of the state and the service.
10. It is necessary to draft the legal acts specified in these conclusions.
Having evaluated the material collected during the investigation and the circumstances of the investigation, the Committee, makes a conclusion that the heads of the SSD and, personally, Director General Arvydas Pocius are responsible for the shortcomings in the activities of the SSD. In the opinion of the Committee, Director General of the SSD Arvydas Pocius is not capable of properly organising the work of the SSD and of being in charge of it.