Slovenia's Prime Minister Accused Of Corruption

By DUSAN STOJANOVIC

LJUBLJANA, Slovenia (AP) â¿¿ About 10,000 protesters joined the chief of Slovenia's anti-corruption watchdog on Friday in urging the country's prime minister and opposition leader to resign after an official report accused them of graft.

"Thieves! Thieves!" many of the demonstrators chanted as they accused Prime Minister Janez Jansa and opposition leader Zoran Jankovic of corruption. The protesters burned photos of both men in front of Parliament.

"They have to go and that's it," said Nada Vukadinovic, a demonstrator carrying a banner about the two politicians saying: "They Are Finished."

Riot police used tear gas and a stun grenade to disperse about 15 demonstrators who tried to remove a metal barrier separating them from the parliament building in Ljubljana, the Slovenian capital.

A report issued this week by the state Commission for the Prevention of Corruption accused Jansa and Jankovic of serious graft, creating a political crisis in a Balkan state already suffering economic problems and setting off widespread calls for both men to face legal and political consequences.

Goran Klemencic, the head of the watchdog, told The Associated Press in an interview on Friday that the two are accused of "systemic, gross and repeated violations of the anti-corruption legislation."

"It's been the first time in this country that an anti-corruption watchdog has ... accused the head of the government and the head of the opposition, who together basically cover more than 60 percent of the Slovenian political sphere and have held very high offices," Klemencic said. "In that respect, it is expected that this has created an upheaval."

The commission report said Jansa has failed to declare more than ⿬200,000 ($265,260) worth of private assets. It accused Jankovic, who is also the mayor of Ljubljana and one of the richest people in Slovenia, of failing to clarify where ⿬2.4 million ($3.1 million) of his money came from.

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