“We discussed the declassification of former KGB collaborators, as 15 years have passed – is this the time to stop extending the secrecy and give access for the society to see it,” Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius, the leader of the ruling Social Democrats, told journalists after the last meeting of the political council.
His words were seconded by the Order and Justice party’s leader Rolandas Paksas. “There is a deadline, after which the term can be extended so that the information remains classified, or the information can go public. We talked about what we should do now, and the prime minister, the parliamentary speaker and I were in support of publicity,” Paksas told BNS.
Artūras Paulauskas, the chairman of the parliament’s National Security and Defence Committee, stated the “classified” label was expiring for the files of admitted KGB collaborators, adding that the commission for coordination of protection of secrets was to decide on whether it should be extended.
“All of the files of admitted persons, which total at over 1,500, were handed over from the security to the Genocide Centre in 2009. The ‘classified’ label was there from the time they came forward. Under the law, the ‘classified’ label works for 15 years. The 15 years have passed and the Genocide Centre is now to decide whether they suggest that the coordination commission should extend the deadline – and the term can be extended for up to 10 years, and the number of extensions is unlimited – or decide to make the files public,” Paulauskas told BNS.
He gave a sceptical view of the political council’s discussions on declassification of the data. In his words, the state has guaranteed secrecy for the people who admitted their collaboration with the KGB. Furthermore, anti-Lithuanian services could take advantage of the information.