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Soldiers fined in race case

COLONEL Pavol Pančík and Major Peter Majtán were each fined Sk5,000 (€125) over their comment that "97 percent of Roma are unable to adapt and should be shot dead," referring to Slovakia's Roma minority, most of whom live in poverty.

The men were speaking at a 2001 meeting of professional soldiers in the central Slovak town of Zvolen, where minority-versus-majority issues in Slovak society were being discussed.

Both soldiers appealed against the ruling made by a military court in Banská Bystrica on April 29.

During the trial, Majtán said that he felt no racial hatred against any minority group and that his best friend was a Roma.

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Blog: In Slovakia, tradition is key

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