NEWS BRIEFS

Stank briefs army officials

CONFIDENT of Nato membership, Defence Minister Jozef Stank said last week at an army officials' meeting: "With confidence and pride we can look into the future".

Stank also said that in 2003 the conscription period, to be abolished by 2006, will be shortened from nine to six months. The minister added that he was willing to postpone the tender for purchase of new military planes until after the parliamentary elections in September 2002 "provided that it proves impossible to avoid politicising the process in the pre-election struggle".

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