Coalition agreement signed

The leaders of the four centre-right parties that won a narrow majority in parliamentary elections yesterday signed a coalition agreement and vowed to launch painful social reforms in the first half of their four-year term.

The agreement gives each party a veto over government decisions, but regards siding with the opposition to defeat a government proposal as a gross breach of faith that could annul the agreement.

The coalition agreement sets out broad cabinet intentions such as cutting state spending, reforming education, health care, pensions and the social benefits systems, making the courts more effective and introducing tougher penalties for repeat offenders.

Analysts have noted the deal does not expressly forbid the debate of controversial topics such as compensation for ethnic groups which lost property after the second world war, in a sign of what they called mutual trust among the four future members of the Slovak government coalition.

Compiled by Tom Nicholson from press reports.
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

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