Onetime Slovak Ambassador to the Czech Republic Ivan Mjartan was elected chairman of the Democratic Centrist Party (SDS), a newcomer to the Slovak political scene, on October 9 in Banská Bystrica. Mjartan founded the party in September.
The central Slovak metropolis hosted 151 SDS at a cingress whose slogan was "Expertise, Communicative Approach, Decency."
In his opening speech, Mjartan mused on the last 100 years as "the ideologically bloodiest century" ever, and spoke of the challenges the next millennium brings for Slovakia. He underscored xenophobia in Slovakia which has produced international isolation, envy and economic exploitation, and the themes of tolerance, moral rectitude, co-operation, national pride and modern society.
Mjartan said that the SDS should be the party for the middle class, and should develop as a centrist or moderately left-wing party.
Mjartan sees his political partners on the left wing of the Sloval political scene - the tiny the Social-Democratic Party (SDSS), Democratic Union (DU), the Party of Civil Understanding (SOP) and the Party of the Democratic Left (SDĽ). However, Mjartan has not ruled out working with any party.
18. Oct 1999 at 0:00 | From press reports of TASR and SITA