Bratislava/Vienna, July 18 (TASR) – A victory for Ukraine against the Russian invading forces is in the interests not only of Slovakia, but also of the whole of Europe, as it will bring stability to the entire region, said Slovak Premier Eduard Heger at a joint press conference with Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer in Vienna on Monday.
“It’s important for us that all our neighbouring countries are free,” said Heger. Slovakia has been providing Ukraine with such extensive assistance partly for this reason, he said, praising the fact that solidarity works not only within the EU, but also in the entire democratic world.
Heger highlighted the quality of bilateral relations between Slovakia and Austria, characterising them as “friendly, correct and deepening”. He thanked Austria for adopting a law on retroactive payments of family allowances to citizens of other EU-member states working in Austria, as it also applies to Slovak citizens. Heger noted that the two countries are interconnected in terms of their economies and labour markets and are able to resolve the problems they face thanks to open communication between them.
Heger stressed the importance of cooperation within the EU in the area of energy, as several countries, including Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Austria and Germany, are dependent on gas supplies from Russia. In this context, he highlighted the need to build adequate infrastructure.
In connection with the influx of refugees from Ukraine, Heger praised solidarity within the EU and the help provided to individual countries. At the end of his statement in Vienna, he emphasised that “the 21st century should be a century of peace”.