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Schiffer, Andras

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Magyar Hírlap - Hungary | 22/08/2006

Former secret service functionaries in public office

György Petö, mayor of Budapest's Obuda district, has made a public statement that he worked for the former Hungarian Ministry of State Security's counterintelligence department between 1979 and 1983. Andras Schiffer, spokesman for the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union (TASZ), calls for Petö's resignation even though he did not actually work with Stasi spies. "There were no retributions after 1989. Former state security functionaries are entitled to take part in public life within the democracy. The principle of legality was maintained after the change of system but it has been taken too far. A clear distinction between dictatorship and rule of law, between the roles and functions of the times before 1989, forms the moral foundation of the new Republic. Functionaries of Hungary's former Ministry of State Security cannot be regarded as 'professionals' of a democratic constitutional state because back then they controlled the dictatorship."

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