The Central and East European Committee of Socialist International held its first-ever meeting in Bratislava, Slovak media reported. More than 70 delegates and guests gathered in the Slovak capital on July 15 for the two-day session. Meeting with President Michal Kováč, Socialist International Secretary-General Luis Ayala said his organization aims to help strengthen democracy in Slovakia and to work toward the country's full integration into European structures. With regard to the political situation in Slovakia, Slovak Social Democratic Party (SDSS) chairman Jaroslav Volf criticized the opposition's continued exclusion from key oversight committees. Meeting with Prime Minister Vladimír Mečiar, Socialist International representatives expressed support for Slovak membership in the EU and criticized those who call for Slovakia's isolation. The SDSS is a member of the Socialist International, and the Party of the Democratic Left (SDĽ) is expected to be admitted in September.
31. Jul 1996 at 0:00 | From press reports of TASR and SITA