Slovak troops to leave Iraq by February 2007

THE SOLDIERS that Slovak has stationed in Iraq as part of the Iraqi Freedom operation will be withdrawn at the end of February 2007 despite a plea from US Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice that they be left in place.

Slovak Foreign Minister Ján Kubiš made the announcement yesterday following his meeting with Slovak President Ivan Gašparovič.

Meanwhile, in a show of support for another of Slovakia’s military commitments, PM Robert Fico, Defense Minister František Kašický and Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák paid an unexpected visit to the country’s contingent in Afghanistan, where it has been participating in operation Enduring Freedom since 2002.

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