Prague, Jan 30 (CTK) – The Czechs who were kidnapped in Lebanon in 2015 have no right to a compensation worth 40 million crowns, as a court dismissed on Tuesday their complaint about the state’s failure to prevent the abduction and said it found no mistake on the part of state bodies.
The verdict is not definitive and can be appealed.
The lawsuit was filed by four of the five kidnapped Czechs – defence lawyer Jan Svarc, interpreter Adam Homsi and journalists Miroslav Dobes and Pavel Kofron. They spent 199 days in captivity in Lebanon.
The four Czechs lodged the lawsuit against the ministries of finance, justice, interior and defence after unsuccessfully asking them for a compensation.
“Money is not our motive. We had to claim a financial sum for the court to start dealing with the issue. We want to learn what occurred then,” Svarc said before the court session, referring to the events of 2015.
He said the state keeps silent on the case and that he has information that a battle of secret services accompanied the Czech group’s abduction.
The state failed in face of the abduction and it could have prevented it, the claimants say.
“The civilian intelligence service (UZSI) did not want the state to intervene and it consented our staying there. The military intelligence service (VZ) acted just the other way round,” Svarc said.
The complainants previously said the UZSI knew that a retaliation for the Czech detention of Ali Fayad, a Lebanese intelligence agent wanted by the USA, was planned.
Fayad was released from a Czech prison on the same day when the five kidnapped Czechs returned home. Then Czech defence minister Martin Stropnicky confirmed to media that a condition for the release of the Czechs was that Prague does not extradite Fayad to the USA, where he is suspected of collaboration with terrorists.
The U.S. embassy in Prague sharply criticised the Czech decision not to extradite Fayad.
The abduction of the five Czechs was investigated by the Czech police, who shelved the case after some time, however.
Svarc says the police could not uncover anything because the only reaction they met with was silence.
The only one of the abducted Czechs who does not seek compensation is Martin Psik, a VZ officer. According to previous speculations, he went to Lebanon to gain information about another Czech man, who had been abducted in Libya.