Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

Defence Minister plans changes to Slovak unit in Iraq

SLOVAK Defence Minister Juraj Liška is considering several possible changes to the unit of Slovak engineers deployed in Iraq according to SITA news agency. However, no changes are expected at the next troop rotation, planned for the end of January or the beginning of February.

The unit currently numbers around 100 members. Liška is considering reducing the number of army engineers and replacing them with military police. He is also considering sending more instructors to the NATO mission that is training Iraqi security forces.

The minister said it was difficult to say how long the Slovak unit would remain in Iraq, and that Slovakia has not decided whether to withdraw its forces from the strife-torn country. He added that the quicker Iraqi forces are trained, the sooner Slovak soldiers will return home.

January 4 was one of the bloodiest days in Iraq since the December 15 elections, with 53 people killed in various actions by insurgents. Violence in Iraq has been endemic and on the rise since the US-led invasion of the country in 2003, and the Iraqi Interior Ministry reported yesterday that 2,880 terrorist attacks targeting Iraqi security forces and civilians had occured in 2005, killing 7,430 Iraqis.

Slovakia is waiting for a decision by the UN Security Council on extending the mandate of the multinational force in Iraq. However, Slovakia also conditions its presence in Iraq on the consent of the Iraqi government. If both the UN and Iraq approve, Slovak troops will stay, the minister said.

Compiled by Martina Jurinová from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

Top stories

The normalisation of our relations has grown

Most people want the EU to exist in the future – we just have to mobilise this majority and not take things for granted, says Austrian Ambassador to Slovakia Helfried Carl in an interview with The Slovak Spectator.

Austrian Ambassador Helfried Carl

Fico for better fish fingers

It’s true that in the past four months, Mr Fico has been comparatively less busy than his Visegrad Group partners.

Austrian fish fingers angered PM Fico.

12 places where you can see the works of one of the best medieval wood carvers Photo

The works of the renowned Master Paul are not limited just to Levoča.

St Geirge Curch in Spišská Sobota

Ukrainian caught beauty of Nitra in video Video

The city under Zobor is beautiful also from a bird’s perspective.