Slovakia's 2016 Presidency of the Council of the European Union

Slovak Deputy Prime Minister addresses UNESCO and praises Arab philosophy

“The world needs UNESCO more than ever in efforts to eradicate illiteracy and poverty. And also to stand up to extremism, intolerance and savage destruction of cultural and historical heritage.

We in Europe are proud of our historic heritage including Ancient Greek and Roman philosophy. We should remember and occasionally remind ourselves that during the Middle Ages, Greek ideas were largely forgotten in Western Europe. They re-entered the West through translations from Arabic to Latin thanks to Islamic philosophers such as Al - Kindi ( Alkindus ), Al-Farabi( Alpharabius ), Ibn Sina ( Avicenna ) and Ibn Rushd ( Averroes ). The reintroduction of these philosophies, accompanied by the new Arabic commentaries, had a great influence on Medieval philosophers such as Thomas Aquinas. That has been a real contribution of Islam to Europe. We need more Islamic philosophers and scientists and less hate preachers.

Such, indeed, words were uttered by Miroslav Lajčák, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Slovak Republic, at UNESCO’s Leaders’ Forum in Paris on Tuesday. (Read Lajčák's speech in English and French...)

French intellectuals criticize Slovak PM for his reaction to Paris tragedy

Statement of Slovak Prime Minister, doctor Robert Fico that "all muslims in Slovakia are under surveillance" as well as his repeated acts of association of regufees with terrorists had induced many critical reactions. In an interview for journal SME, Anne Dastakian, a journalist for well-known french journal Marianne had reacted: "That terrorists could have exploited the refugee crisis does not mean that all refugees are terrorists. Even Marine Le Pen would not utter such stupidity." (Read more...)

Even sharper critics was expressed by Martin Michelot, researcher in Institute for European Policy EUROPEUM who commented Fico's verbal behaviour as follows: "Such approach is...extremly bad. Comments of Robert Fico only induce fear and panics. I understand that in march 2016 Slovakia shall held elections, but this is very disturbing and unfortunate." (Read more...)

Fico implicitly reinforces the association between migrants and terrorists

In an aftermath of Paris 13.11.15 attacks, Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico hasn't hesitated to interpret the tragedy in a way that suits his pre-electoral needs. While he tacitly ignored the fact that Bataclan attackers looked to be of north African descent and spoke fluent French without an accent, Mr. Fico utilitarized an instantly organized press conference to score political points among xenophobic parts of Slovak electorate.

“We have been saying for several months that the security risks linked to migration are huge,” said doctor Fico with a face expressing the satisfaction of a wizard whose dark self-fulfilling prophecy came true. (Read more...)

Police investigates a leaked video pointing to Slovak PM

Slovak police has started to investigate the suspicion that former Smer MP, Vladimír Jánoš, accepted money for the ruling party from the head of Hornonitrianske Bane (Upper Nitra Mines) in Prievidza, Peter Čičmanec and was passing the money further to governing party Smer or even to its leader, current prime minister Robert Fico.

The suspicion was initiated by social-media leak of a video in which the ex-wife of Janos describes the practices of her husband who used to bring home millions of euro in cash, packing them into aluminium foil (in order to prevent them from burning) and subsequently forwarding the money further to Smer and Fico. (Read more...)

Slovakia ignores EU refugee quotas

The European Commission has noticed that Slovakia has not been fulfilling its duties stemming from the EU quotas on re-distribution of refugees among member states.

By the end of October, Slovakia was obliged to state how many refugees it can accept and accommodate by the end of this year. In the first phase, 802 people should come to the country according to the approved quotas. Slovakia has reacted by saying that it will accept a maximum of 200 refugees. (Read more...)

9 European countries gravely concerned by Russia's 'aggressive' stance

Leaders of nine Central and Eastern European and Baltic states said in a joint statement on Wednesday they were gravely concerned by Russia's "continuing aggressive posturing" and backed a sustainable NATO military presence in the region.

"We will stand firm on the need for Russia to return to respect of international law as well as of its international obligations, responsibilities and commitments as a pre-condition for a NATO–Russia relationship based on trust and confidence," presidents of Slovakia, Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Bulgaria, Poland, Hungary and Romania + president of czech parliament said in a joint declaration. (Read more...)

Citizens commemorate the murdered student, Slovak police interrupts the prosecution

Exactly 10 years ago, not further than 150 meters from the building of Slovak Ministry of Interior, had the young man with long hair and a guitar died because of severe wounds caused by a knife attack. In spite of the fact that in the past, multiple persons from slovak neonazi scene were charged and prosecuted the Ministry, since murder twice led by current Minister Robert Kalinak, had failed to find the murderer and instead liberated all suspects, also associated with the mafia group known as "piťovci".

Whether both Ministries of Interior and Justice had done what they could to investigate the case is, of course, place for argument. But according to the father of the murdered philosphy student, they didn't, and while obliged to "accept" the non-prosecution of killers as a fact, the father still consideres as "a mystery" why the police refused to use the lie detector when in other cases (e.g. security clearances), it does. (Read more...)

IT professionals call for paradigm shift in informatization of slovak society

Almost 3000 Slovak netizens have signed the "call for opened collaboration" published on site In their call, many prominent IT specialist from private sector, 3rd sector as well as Academia openly criticize corrupt investments of public and european money and invite the government to collaborate on more transparent solutions.

Being far from marginal, signataries of the call have received support from the head of the state, president Andrej Kiska, stating that "after 8 years, the state has succeeded to accomplish exactly half of itss assignment - to spend 900 million euros" and labeling the current status quo of slovak informatic society as a "shame". (Read more...)