Summery of the letter from the Ministry of Agriculture to Dr. Milan Hulik, dated 4. 12. 2002

From: Petr Krejci (Director of the Minister of Agriculture s cabinet), Prague, 4.12.2002

To: Dr. Milan Hulik (representing Alzbeta Pezoldova)

On behalf of the Minister I state:

The ministry of Agriculture is a central body of the Czech state administration with competences determined by the law. A decision on an appeal against a confiscation under decree no. 12/1945 coll. does not fall under its responsibility. It also cannot determine another body of the state administration to decide the matter.

In this context the Ministry of Agriculture draws attention to the fact that decree no. 12/1945 coll. has not been applicable since 28.12.1992, when the list of human rights became part of the Czech legal order. A completion of an administrative procedure started under decree no. 12/1945 coll. Therefore it is impossible.

The Ministry of Agriculture maintains that any application of the so called Benes decrees is impossible under valid law. These rules were not revoked, but the restitution laws do not require their application. In Alzbeta Pezoldova s case the European Commission stated that she can pursues a violation of the European Convention of Human Rights in the Czech Republic only after 1992; the European Court also stated in the same case that each state is entitled to determine its own conditions for restitution.

The Ministry of Agriculture does not believe that the public assumes that the Schwarzenberg estate was confiscated according to the decrees. It is generally known that the Schwarzenberg estate was expropriated according to a special law.

The views of the Ministry of Agriculture with regard to the application of the so called Benes decrees are unambiguous and valid also in Mrs. Pezoldova s case. The Ministry insists on its statement that the Schwarzenberg estate was not confiscated [pursuant to decree 12/1945].

The Ministry of Agriculture has paid considerable attention to the matter of Mrs. Pezoldova and asks Dr. Hulik to respect the above – mentioned views.

Signature: Petr Krejči