Slovakia Condemns Coup Attempt in Turkey, No Reason to Panic

Turkish citizens wave their national flags as they protest against the military coup outside Turkey's parliament near the Turkish military headquarters in Ankara, Turkey, Saturday, July 16, 2016 (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)

Bratislava, July 16 (TASR) – Slovakia supports democratic processes in Turkey and condemns the attempt at violent overthrow of the local Government, Interior Minister Robert Kalinak (Smer-SD) said after the session of the National Security Council and Analytical Centre on Saturday.

“Turkey represents our key strategic security partner. A stable Turkey is of extraordinary importance to us, as it’s located at our (EU) border and any destabilisation might have far-reaching consequences for us,” said Kalinak.

Both Foreign and European Affairs Minister Miroslav Lajcak (a Smer-SD nominee) and Defence Minister Peter Gajdos (an SNS nominee) concurred that despite the coup attempt in Turkey, there is no reason for panic at the moment. The situation has stabilised and evacuation of Slovak nationals from the country is not required. For the time being, however, the Foreign Affairs Ministry doesn’t recommend Slovaks to travel to either Ankara or Istanbul.

“I convened the crisis response staff and inquired about latest developments reported also by intelligence services. Based on what I’ve learned, there is no need for panic,” said Gajdos, adding that the Defence Ministry is in contact with NATO and EU. “No political nor military bodies or procedures within NATO have been activated so far,” he said, underlining the importance of Turkey as an ally.

Kalinak accentuated the importance of stable Turkey also in light of the migration crisis in Europe. “Any improvement regarding migration certainly requires Turkey’s involvement,” said Kalinak, adding that the situation has stabilised, which represents good news also for Slovak holidaymakers.