EXTRA security along Slovakia’s eastern border with Ukraine should be extended by summer, Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák said after the May 14 cabinet session. He added that the measures can be eased later.

“[The measures] are sufficient for now, but we plan to prepare more intensively, so we would like to extend them on other sections,” Kaliňák said, as quoted by the SITA newswire.

According to the minister, apart from an increase in smugglers’ armaments and aggression, there are no serious threats along the border. He added that once the problems in Ukraine are resolved, it will be possible to loosen the security measures.

The Interior Ministry views the situation in the western part of Ukraine as relatively calm, Kaliňák added. He also said that the current conflict does not pertain to ethnic or religious tension, and therefore there should be no massive displacement of Ukrainian citizens.

“If there is no open military conflict between Ukraine and Russia, there is no reason for a wave of immigrants to occur,” Kaliňák added, as quoted by SITA.

Despite some opposition efforts, parliament will not discuss the current situation in Ukraine. The deputies have rejected support for two proposals submitted by opposition MPs to discuss whether Slovakia is prepared for a possible military conflict in Ukraine and what form the security measures on the border would take, SITA wrote.

Meanwhile, Slovakia’s Foreign Affairs Ministry issued a statement saying that the referendums organised by pro-Russian separatists on May 11 on the independence of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine were illegal because they were carried out in conflict with existing Ukrainian legislation.
The ministry’s statement adds that Slovakia does not recognise the results of the referendums and that it recognises Ukraine as an independent, sovereign state. At the same time, Slovakia calls on those concerned to refrain from moves that could lead to an escalation of tension in eastern Ukraine and bring its territorial integrity into question, the TASR newswire reported.

According to the statement, all Ukrainian citizens will be able to express their will in the presidential election set to take place on May 25. The ministry further believes that in order to find a way out of the crisis in line with the four-party talks between Ukraine, Russia, the EU and the US that took place in Geneva on April 17, it is necessary to refrain from violence and provocation in the east and south of Ukraine.