Ex-SRI head George Maior heard in Parliament on 2009 elections: ‘Visit to Gabriel Oprea was a private event’

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The Romanian ambassador to the US, George Maior was heard in Parliament’s inquiry committee on 2009 election on Monday, as former director of the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI).

Maior told journalists before entering the committee’s sitting that SRI had fulfilled its mission in compliance with the legal rules all through 2009. “It’s my opinion. All that the service did is archived and deposited in the services’ and the state archives. 2009 was a special year, since early 2009 I have paid attention to the way SRI maintained its service. I made several public statements back then (…) The service went exemplarily”, Maior stated.

As for the meeting at ex-deputy PM Gabriel Oprea’s house, Maior admitted he did went to Oprea’s place on the night of elections, but explained it was a private event and no illegal actions happened there. “It was a private event, it has no relevance from the point of view of the committee’s responsibilities. The SRI director will always attend public and private events, I will also discriminate between private and public events,” the former national intelligence head said.

Any state representative can attend a private event, it has nothing to do with my quality as head of an intelligence institution, it would have meant that during my nine-year activity I shouldn’t attend private events, which is somehow against the hair during a person’s activity in the society”, he added.

The former SRI head refused to say if DNA chief prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi (Romania’s Prosecutor General at that time) or SRI first deputy director Florian Coldea were also present at that meeting at Oprea’s house. “I won’t talk about the private event as such or about the persons having attended it. Any person who knows about this private event can notify any state institution regarding potential irregularities or unconstitutional aspects,” he said.

George Maior also avoided answering the journalists’ questions. Yet, questioned on some information in his email related to hacker Guccifer, Maior said: “Fake news”.

Maior admitted that he has been and is friend of Gabriel Oprea and Vasile Dincu, and that his relation with Kovesi “was strictly professional”.

Initially, the inquiry committee on the 2009 elections sent Maior an invitation to come to hearings on June 6, but at that moment no information about President Iohannis’ visit in the USA was available.

Maior told the committee chairman, PSD senator Mihia Fifor a letter informing him he will come back to Romania and will be able to attend the hearings on June 12.

Besides Georhe Maior, Virgil Voineag, the president of the National Institute of Statistics at that time, is also expected at the hearings today.

The committee will hear Robert Cazanciu, Gheorghe Netoiu, Catalin Voicu and Dumitru Iliescu on Tuesday, and former Democrat Liberal PM Emil Boc is expected on Wednesday.

The inquiry committee also send an invitation for hearings to the anti-corruption chief prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi, but she denied invitation, arguing that prosecutors cannot be subpoenaed and compelled to come as witnesses before the parliamentary committees.

The chairman of the inquiry committee Mihai Fifor stated on Monday that there is already the confirmation that Laura Codruta Kovesi has attended the meeting at Oprea’s place, adding that solutions are sought so that the invited persons should come in front of the commitee.

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