National security committee head queries state leaders about possible links between Azeri funds, extradition
The head of parliament’s national security committee Zsolt Molnár, of the opposition Socialists, has asked the interior minister and heads of the national security services, the central bank and the tax office about possible links between the 2012 extradition of an Azeri soldier who had killed an Armenian in Hungary and the alleged transfer of funds to a Hungarian bank account.
At the latest national security committee meeting,
the “ruling majority blocked” the launch of a fact-finding investigation about the issue,
he told a press conference. For this reason, Molnár said he had asked Interior Minister Sándor Pintér in writing about the extradition and its international aspects, the actions of the Constitution Protection Office and the bank accounts reported by the press.
After the Azeri soldier’s extradition, various theories surfaced about why he had been extradited “under scandalous circumstances”, Molnár said.
The case tainted Hungary’s international reputation and brought an end to Hungarian-Armenian diplomatic relations. If it is now revealed that there were “millions of dollars rolling in” in the background, then “we are facing another scandalous case of suspected corruption”, he added.
Molnár told reporters in front of the central bank building that certain aspects of the case reached beyond the national security services. According to press reports, transfers of seven million dollars and nine million dollars have been made from Azerbaijan to Hungarian accounts held in MKB Bank. Molnár added that the transactions raised concerns about money laundering and the supervision of the transparency of accounts.
It has to be clarified when, for what reason and in what way the amounts were transferred and why the former financial supervisory authority PSZÁF, the central bank, the tax authority and MKB Bank failed to report the suspicious transfers or if MKB Bank did report it, why the central bank or the tax authority failed to take action, he said.
On August 31, 2012, Hungary extradited Ramil Sahib Safarov, an Azeri soldier who was spending a life sentence in Hungary for killing a fellow soldier from Armenia in 2004.
Safarov was freed under a presidential pardon immediately after his return to Azerbaijan.