Fico: Slovak-German Relations Not Burdened by Opinions on War in Ukraine

Fico: Slovak-German Relations Not Burdened by Opinions on War in Ukraine
From left, Prime Minister Robert Fico and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at a press conference in Berlin on January 24, 2024 (photo by TASR)

       Berlin, January 24 (TASR-correspondent) - There are no open political issues between Slovakia and Germany, and bilateral relations aren't burdened by the governments' differing views on some aspects of the war in Ukraine, Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-SD) stated at a joint press conference with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in Berlin on Wednesday evening.
        "The fact that we have different views on some aspects of international politics doesn't mean that our bilateral relations are burdened," stressed Fico.
        In connection with Ukraine, he emphasised that he rejects the policy of one mandatory opinion and also doesn't believe in a military solution to the armed conflict. "We have the same opinion on the European perspective of Ukraine. We're ready to help Ukraine. We reject military aid to Ukraine. Of course, we have the right to do so, because military aid is mostly on a bilateral basis," he said.
        The Slovak premier further pointed out that Slovakia supports all peace initiatives in connection with the resolution of the conflict in Ukraine and has also expressed support for the peace plan of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, even though he has doubts about its feasibility.
        At the press conference, Scholz highlighted the close relations between Slovakia and Germany, according to him, he and Fico discussed deepening relations with a special emphasis on the economy.
        The German chancellor continued that contemporary Europe lives in difficult times in terms of security and international politics. "We can only manage these challenges in Europe together," he stressed.
        According to him, the negotiations were also a preparation for next week's EU summit, where financial aid for Ukraine will be discussed. Scholz stated that the goal is to reach an agreement of all EU member states on the adjustment of the multi-annual financial framework so that Kiev can receive €50 billion over the next four years. Hungary opposed this in December. According to Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal, Fico promised him at Wednesday's meeting in Uzhhorod not to block the EU's €50 billion aid.
        Scholz further pointed out that Slovakia, as a neighbour of the invaded Ukraine, is in a special position, and highlighted its assistance to Ukrainian refugees and its clear support for Ukraine from the very beginning of the Russian invasion.