Opposition requests inquiry into political interference in police

Ljubljana – A group of opposition parties has requested a parliamentary inquiry into alleged political interference in police work during a period from 13 March 2020, when the Janez Janša government was sworn in, to the launching of the inquiry.

The petition was signed by 39 MPs of the Marjan Šarec List (LMŠ), Social Democrats (SD), Left and Alenka Bratušek Party (SAB), urging an investigation to establish “the actual situation and potential political responsibility of public officials for unacceptable political interfering in the work of the Slovenian police, its investigative bodies, investigative teams and autonomous investigative units due to suspicion of political influence on the phases and/or the outcome of pre-trial and other procedures”.

Among the public officials who have allegedly interfered in police work in an unacceptable way, the parties highlight Interior Minister Aleš Hojs and members of his office as well as Prime Minister Janez Janša and his office.

Apart from establishing whether the Interior Ministry has been interfering in specific pre-trial and other procedures, the inquiry would aim to determine whether unacceptable political pressure have been exerted on police officials and staff, the parties said.

Moreover, the inquiry would seek to establish whether the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) is operating autonomously and whether there has been any political interference in its work.

What the parties see as political staffing in police would also be a matter of the inquiry. The initiators of the investigation believe that all the senior posts in the police are held by people with ties to the ruling Democrats (SDS) after a number of replacements.

The police has also found “a new way of removing contentious police detectives or heads of investigations who could jeopardise the SDS interests – the setting up of task forces”, the parties said.