April 25, 1981
Minutes of Meeting between Czechoslovak and Hungarian Interior Ministry Officials on the Carlos Terrorist Group and Radio Free Europe Bomb Attack
The 2nd Administrative Division of the Ministry of the Interior Department 6
File No. os-00847
Prague, April 25, 1981
Issue No. 1
Minutes of the meeting with a representative of the Ministry of the Interior of Hungary, Colonel Varga
Minutes of meeting with Colonel Varga of the Hungarian ministry of the interior held at the II. S-SNB building, on the 24th day of April 1981, reporting on the status of our knowledge of the terrorist organization the Hands of the World revolution currently active in Hungary, and discussing a draft of countermeasures to be taken against the Carlos terrorist group.
Hungarian Ministry of the Interior – Colonel Varga
II. S-SNB – Lt. Colonel DrPH. Jiri Jira, Head of the 5th Department
Lt. Colonel Milan Solnicky, Deputy Head of the 6th department
Captain Ivo Juska, administrative assistant, 6th Department
Interpreter – 1st department SNB
Comrade Colonel Varga reported on the activities of the Carlos terrorist group operating in Hungary with its headquarters in Budapest. Three major factors were emphasized:
1. Cooperation of the Carlos terrorist group with the Hungarian ministry of the interior
2. Recent developments
3. Concrete counterterrorist measures
1. The analysis of the Carlos terrorist group shows that the group cooperates closely with the authorities of the Ministry of the Interior of the Socialist Republic of Romania. It was found that the terrorist organization the Hands of the World Revolution has been supplied by Romania with arms, explosives, passports for countries of the [Warsaw] Pact, and training. To repay these favors, Carlos promised to organize terrorist attacks against Romanian emigrants living in Europe. As proof that Carlos is taking this agreement seriously, he carried out bomb attacks against Romanian citizens in Paris, on February 5 1981, including the apartments of the Romanian writer Nicolas Penescu, Mr. routs, and Mr. Chescu, a Romanian emigrant living in Cologne. During each of these attacks, explosives detonated and people were injured.
On February 21, 1981 Carlos carried out a bomb attack against the Czechoslovak broadcasting service in Munich, in the building housing Radio Free Europe. The comrades from Hungary have direct proof that this operation was executed at the request of the Romanian Socialist Republic. The operation was planned to be carried out a week earlier but for technical reasons was postponed to February 21, 1981. The operation was organized and directed by Steve [Johannes Weinrich, a member of the Carlos group]. All the members of the Carlos group met in Budapest on February 22 1981, one day after the attack. It was confirmed that on that day Carlos telephoned a Romanian representative and informed him of the results of the operation. The Romanian expressed satisfaction. Later on, the leadership of the Carlos group left for Romania and was received there at the highest level. The Romanian government and Ministry of the Interior are interested in further terrorist activities. Our Hungarian comrades provided us with documentation concerning the preparation and execution of the attack against Radio Free Europe.
2. Encouraged by the success, the Carlos group set up a plan for further operations. They intend to carry out attacks against Sadat—in this case Libya is interested.
At present the Carlos terrorist gang is actively engaged in transporting weapons to African countries. They are also interested in anti-terrorist security measures used by different European countries. After the attack on Radio Free Europe at the end of February 1981, the security authorities of the German Democratic Republic arrested a Swiss national, Georgio Bellini, alias Roberto, born March 25, 1945, the leader of a Swiss terrorist organization. This terrorist group closely cooperates with Carlos and takes part in his operations. Bellini is aware of the terrorist activities against Radio Free Europe, Carlos’ connection with the Romanian Socialist Republic, and that Budapest is Carlos’ headquarters. Bellini’s potential testimony might throw an unfavorable light on the socialist countries. The Hungarian ministry of the interior has more evidence about the intentions of the German Federal Republic and Italy to arrest more people who are in contact with Carlos. Also this operation could cast a shadow on socialist countries. It is obvious that under these conditions Carlos’ stay on the territory of the socialist countries is becoming dangerous.
The representatives of the interior ministries of socialist countries were to meet in Budapest to discuss these important issues. The meeting had to be postponed due to the congresses of the Communist Parties of these countries. Since there are no disagreements among socialist countries regarding concrete radical counterterrorist measures, the Hungarian Ministry of the Interior will liquidate Carlos’ group and inform the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic, the Soviet Union, the German Democratic Republic, and the Bulgarian People’s Republic.
Authorities in the German Democratic Republic recently took a completely different position regarding the Carlos group. About a month ago Dr. Gaal discussed the matter with the Hungarian Ministry of the Interior. The German Democratic Republic changed its views in light of Carlos’ behavior, and came out in favor of the planned counterterrorist measures. Carlos is no longer interested in visiting the German Democratic Republic [since] there was an argument between Carlos and the GDR authorities. As a result Carlos cannot move freely on the territory of the GDR and is under strict supervision. GDR authorities consulted on the matter with Cuba, which has been known to have very good relations with Carlos (particularly one Cuban security official). According to an unofficial agreement, Carlos is supposed to relocate to a Latin-American country and infiltrate the liberation organizations of Latin America. GDR and Cuba will discuss the plan in the near future, however it is not clear how Cuba will react to the counterterrorist measures aimed at Carlos’ group.
Carlos’ behavior has not changed. On April 18, 1981 a new casino for foreigners was opened in Budapest. Carlos, Steve, and three other members of the group were among the first visitors. They behaved in a provocative manner, instigated a fight that was dispersed by the Hungarian ministry of the interior. Carlos also expressed interest in renting a restaurant in the country where he planned to build a shooting-range and a training camp.
3. Based on the above evidence, the Hungarian authorities will take two weeks to resolve the problem of the Carlos group. The Hungarian authorities will summon Carlos to their offices and let him know that he and his group are not welcome in Hungary, because his activities do not conform to Hungarian policies. He and his group will be asked to move out of Hungary within a certain period of time. He will be told to move out in such a manner that will make it clear to him that his stay in any socialist country will be undesirable. Libya’s and Syria’s favorable approach to the Carlos group will be taken into consideration during this operation. That’s why Carlos will be told that he and his gang may stay in Hungary only for a short period of time or can only drive through.
We do not know how Carlos will react to these measures. He is enjoying his stay in Hungary. He was invited to Romania but he declined to visit since current conditions in Romania are not good for his activities.
The Czechoslovak ministry of the interior will inform the Hungarian authorities about the results of these measures.
Recorded by Captain Ivo Juska
Deputy of the Head of the 6th Department, Colonel Solnicky
A bomb exploded outside the RFE building in Munich on February 21, 1981, severely injuring several employees and causing major physical damage. This document, and others like it, indicates that the Ceausescu regime commissioned the “Carlos group” to carry out the attack. The Carlos group was then resident in Budapest, and this document indicates that the Hungarian Interior Ministry had advance knowledge of the bombing.
The History and Public Policy Program welcomes reuse of Digital Archive materials for research and educational purposes. Some documents may be subject to copyright, which is retained by the rights holders in accordance with US and international copyright laws. When possible, rights holders have been contacted for permission to reproduce their materials.
To enquire about this document's rights status or request permission for commercial use, please contact the History and Public Policy Program at [email protected]lsoncenter.org.