Coalition Will Debate NATO Troop Presence, If Offer Comes; Opposition Is Against

Coalition Will Debate NATO Troop Presence, If Offer Comes; Opposition Is Against

Bratislava, January 28 (TASR) – The coalition OLaNO and ‘We Are Family’ parties will only address the issue of the presence of NATO troops in Slovakia in connection with the situation in Ukraine when such an offer comes, while the extra-parliamentary opposition Voice-SD in this context called on the Government to inform Parliament about NATO’s plans in Slovakia, TASR learnt on Friday.

“Slovakia hasn’t yet received any official offer from NATO. As soon as such an offer comes, we’ll deal with it. The decision will then also depend on the development of the security situation in Ukraine,” OLaNO told TASR.

‘We Are Family’ noted that there is no such offer yet and it is just a behind-the-scenes debate among NATO allies. “At the moment, it doesn’t make sense to talk about it at all. If such an official offer comes to the table, only then will we deal with it in the government, the coalition council and our parliamentary caucus,” added the party.

‘For the People’ head Veronika Remisova underlined that NATO is a community of partners who want to help each other defend themselves against external threats, and therefore we can consider soldiers from partner countries to be ours. “As for the presence of soldiers of partner countries in Slovakia, it will be relevant only if Slovakia requests such assistance and it will be a free decision of Slovakia. Especially in the event Ukraine is invaded, such a strengthening of security would be of great importance,” she told TASR.

Voice-SD emphasised that any deployment of Allied forces in Slovakia must be approved by Parliament and must be preceded by a thorough security analysis. It declared its disagreement with the deployment of troops that could subsequently be involved in a potential Russian-Ukrainian conflict. “We will only support the activation of Article Five of the North Atlantic Treaty [collective defence] if one of its member states is attacked,” added Voice-SD, pointing out that it prefers peace talks to escalating tensions connected with increasing military contingents in areas of possible confrontation.