European Council President Herman Van Rompuy visited Slovakia on April 30 and thanked the country for its securing reverse gas flow to Ukraine.
Van Rompuy came to attend celebrations marking the 10 years of Slovakia’s membership in the European Union, and he also met Prime Minister Robert Fico at the Government Office in Bratislava.

Meanwhile, Van Rompuy also said that the situation in Ukraine continues to be a source of serious concern. Should the “small reverse-gas flow” approach not pan out, the EU would need to step up pressure on Russia, he added as quoted by the TASR newswire. Turning to economic issues, he said that the situation in Slovakia and Europe is showing visible signs of recovery. Economic growth is also an instrument to fight euro-sceptic and nationalist parties, as concerns mount of their increasing influence.

When it comes to EU enlargement 10 years ago, Van Rompuy said that the process brought much more prosperity and raised the quality of life for people of Europe. “And Slovakia made use of this to the fullest,” he said.

Another top EU politician to visit Slovakia (and attend the celebration of Slovakia’s entry into the EU 10 years ago) was European Parliament Speaker Martin Schulz. The unnatural division of Europe by the Iron Curtain finally become a thing of the past a decade ago, he said. “Ten years ago, Slovakia along with other nine countries, have finally returned back to the European family,” Schulz said.

“We still need our union, today maybe more than ever,” he claimed, according to TASR, referring to the current situation in Ukraine that he believes demonstrates that peace in Europe is more fragile than previously believed.

(Source: TASR)
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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