Convicted man’s father says he made a mistake but committed no crime

D.Tsakhilgaan, a former ambassador to China and father of Ts.Jargalsaikhan, who was recently sentenced to 17 years in prison for passing State secrets, said at a press conference on Wedenesday that the sentence was too harsh and would very badly affect the country’s foreign relations. The convicted man worked in Parliament’s Office.

“My son was given 17 years in prison according to Article 79 of the Criminal Law for betraying his country. That article deals with people who join a foreign country’s intelligence organization to harm Mongolian sovereignty, national security and defense operations, or cooperate with foreign organization that operate against Mongolia, or defect to the enemy side during war. What organization did my son join? Which intelligence organization had enrolled him? Is Russia an enemy? I demand an explanation. The material he was blamed for giving to others included the plan of a visit and the text of a speech. Russia and Mongolia are friendly neighbors. Exchanging the text of speeches is common for friendly nations. There was nothing about mining, uranium and minerals in the material, as people have been saying. Parliament’s foreign relations department does not negotiate any agreements. My son is a victim of miscarriage of justice. We will appeal against the decision of the preliminary court. I shall also address the heads of Government of the three countries involved. This case may even cause damage to the foreign relationships of Mongolia. Some of my friends want to go on hunger strike if the court does not make the right decision.”

He then answered questions.

What are the charges against him?

One was that he gave to a Russian diplomat on June 3 material on a meeting between the Chinese and Mongolian Prime Ministers. The meeting had been held on June 1 and detailed information was already available. Then he was charged with giving information about the meeting between the Mongolian and Russian Prime Ministers that was canceled. He was also charged with passing the program of the visit of Parliament Speaker D.Demberel to Russia to meet officials.

Why do you think your son is the victim of an organized crime group?

He is my only son and is being sacrificed. It is strange that the Russian side is not giving its side of the matter. Rumors are circulating that he passed information to China, which is entirely false because China has nothing to do with it. Why is suck talk being spread? My son was being spied on since November. Why then did the intelligence organization not prevent the alleged crime?

What relations does your son have with the Russian man who is connected here?

They were friends. The Russian’s father was a diplomat who had worked in Mongolia for ten years. He approached my son saying, “Our fathers are friends.” He used to write research articles about Mongolia and Russia and my son helped him by translating some things. It is being said that he was paid for the translation, that the wife of the Russian presented a necklace to Jargalsaikhan’s wife, that. Jargalsaikhan bought a cell phone with two sim cards, using one sim for his secret work. They even brought out USD 400 from his safe as evidence against him. But that money he had got by selling his phone to pay the tuition of his child.

Do you think your son is innocent? Or do you just think his punishment was too harsh?

I will not say that my son is totally blameless. Everybody makes mistakes. But his mistake was an error of judgment and not a betrayal of his country’s interest. He can be punished for his mistakes but they were violation of government service rules, and not crimes.


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