Czech media have poured cold water on the Sun’s story about Jeremy Corbyn’s supposed meeting with a “commie spy”.
The paper reported yesterday that the Labour leader “met a communist spy at the height of the Cold War and warned him of a clampdown by British intelligence.”
A spokesman for Corbyn said he had met a Czech diplomat for a cup of tea in the House of Commons in 1986, but insisted he had not “offered any privileged information to this or any other diplomat.”
He dismissed the story as a “ridiculous smear” and it seems the Czechs agree.
The English language website reports the verdict on the Sun’s story from the head of the Czech Security Forces Archive, Svetlana Ptacnikova.
The story states:
“British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, whom The Sun daily accused of cooperation with former Czechoslovak communist secret service (StB), probably did not know whom he was meeting at the time, and he does not figure as an StB aide in archive files, Svetlana Ptacnikova said on Thursday.
“Ptacnikova heads the Czech Security Forces Archive that keeps documents of the now defunct StB. The archive documents that mention Corbyn in no way indicate that he was aware of meeting a spy, Ptacnikova said.
“True, Corbyn did meet an StB officer who is referred to as Jan Dymic in the documents, but he considered him a diplomat, Ptacnikova said, adding that The Sun’s headline branding Corbyn a communist spy definitely does not correspond to reality.
“‘Mr Corbyn was neither registered [by the StB] as a collaborator, nor does this [his collaboration] stem from archive documents,’ Ptacnikova said.”
“On the contrary, the Czech archive keepers, who are studying the relevant files, have found signs showing that the StB tried hard to prevent Corbyn from uncovering the real identity of the Czechoslovak official he was meeting, Ptacnikova said…
“…Dymic was a secretary at the embassy in London and he was probably meeting Corbyn in his capacity as a diplomat.”