Bratislava, January 4 (TASR) – It’s important that the situation in the Middle East doesn’t escalate as any further use of force will stir the turbulent atmosphere in the whole region, Slovak President Zuzana Caputova stated on Saturday.
The president called for a sensible assessment and commentary of the recent events. “It’d be very inappropriate and it wouldn’t contribute towards either calming or resolving the situation if this matter was politicised in Slovakia or misused in the ongoing political campaign,” she noted.
Caputova stated that she’s continuously updated on the situation in the Middle East. “The relevant authorities monitor and analyse the events and I expect that they’ll propose next steps jointly with our allies, especially steps concerning the security of soldiers who’re deployed in Iraq within the NATO training mission,” explained Caputova.
Iranian major general Qasem Soleimani was killed on January 3 in Baghdad, Iraq by an air strike carried out by the US army at the behest of US President Donald Trump. The US Department of Defence stated that Soleimani was actively planning attacks on American diplomats in Iraq as well as the whole region.
Parliamentary Chair Andrej Danko (SNS) stated on Saturday that if the situation in Iraq escalates, SNS is ready to raise the question whether Slovak soldiers deployed in the region should be withdrawn. There’re currently seven Slovak soldiers in the country.
Danko adopted a critical stance towards the USA, condemning the assassination. “We can’t be silent at this moment. The EU must show its joint stance to the USA. It’s irresponsible from the USA to take the risk of a terrorist counter-attack and to put Europe in jeopardy by carrying out such operations. This’s an unreal gamble with world peace,” stated Danko, calling on Foreign Affairs Minister Miroslav Lajcak (a Smer-SD nominee) to provide a statement on the situation as well.
“If the president, the prime minister and the Foreign Affairs Ministry remain silent, I’ll suggest that Parliament adopt a resolution that will clearly condemn such actions, which are contrary to international law and threaten the security of EU-member countries,” announced the parliamentary chair.
Pellegrini reacted to Danko soon after. “Any radical declarations directly condemning any of the involved parties do not contribute to the objective view on the current situation of the conflict and significantly distort Slovakia’s foreign policy credibility in the eyes of its allies,” stated Pellegrini, who thus sided with the Foreign Affairs Ministry, which called for resolving the conflict via talks that will prevent escalation of the conflict.