NEWS BRIEFS

Slovak, Czech, Polish and Hungarian PMs to Meet in Bratislava

The Prime Ministers of the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia will meet in Bratislava May 14 as part of an effort towards renewed cooperation between the Višegrad Group (V4) countries, the countries' state secretaries said last week.

The one day summit, which is occurring at the invitation of the Slovak Foreign Ministry, is expected to result in a framework agreement on intergovernmental cooperation.

Slovak State Secretary Ján Figel assumed that Hungary, the Czech Republic and Poland would support Slovakia's efforts to join NATO and proceed to the EU entry vanguard.

In their joint communiqué, the Prime Ministers plan to touch on the Kosovo crisis. The Hungarian Prime Minister said Hungary's attitude towards Kosovo is determined by the country's NATO membership and by being a direct neighbor of Yugoslavia. He said that he unambiguously supported the policies of NATO and believes that NATO air strikes are a tool to reinstall stability to the region.

The V4 document to be signed in Bratislava would specify the content of cooperation between V4 countries in trans-border cooperation and minority policies, culture and sport, art and regional development. V4 PMs would meet annually and Slovakia proposes a circulating V4 chairmanship. Under that agreement, the Czech Republic would hold the next post.

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