Dzurinda says no to cooperation with Mečiar, Fico

SLOVAK Prime Minister Mikuláš Dzurinda would prefer to form a government with the Christian Democratic Movement (KDH) and the Hungarian Coalition Party (SMK) in the next election period, he said in a recent interview with the Czech daily Lidové Noviny.

Dzurinda also rejected post-election cooperation with Vladimír Mečiar, the leader of the opposition Movement for a Democratic Slovakia, as well as with Robert Fico, the head of the opposition Smer party, which is currently running at the top of the polls with over 30 percent, compared to around 10 percent for the HZDS and Dzurinda's SDKÚ party.

"I don't want to cooperate with Mečiar or with Fico. I can't forget the years 1995 to 1998. A murder will be always be a murder, kidnapping will always be kidnapping, and economic crime committed in Slovakia remains crime, perhaps not in the legal but in the moral sense," Dzurinda said.

The prime minister was referring to the 1994 to 1998 government led by Vladimír Mečiar, whose authoritarian style led to Slovakia's becoming internationally isolated.

During this period, the former president's son, Michal Kováč, Jr., was kidnapped to Austria, allegedly by the Slovak secret service (SIS). Later, a go-between to a key secret service witness in the kidnapping case who was testifying to the involvement of the SIS was murdered. The SIS was also suspected of ordering the murder, and its former head, Ivan Lexa, has been charged by police in the case.

However, before the investigation of the abduction could be completed, Mečiar, who was acting president at the time, issued a blanket amnesty for the kidnapping case, which complicated the investigation of the murder case as well.

In the Lidové Noviny interview, Dzurinda also said he wanted "continuity, not a step back" for Slovakia after the next elections.

"I want to renew cooperation with the SMK and KDH," he said, referring to two of the parties with whom he formed a right-wing government in 2002.

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

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