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Bush to acknowledge Central European progress

THE UNITED STATES and Europe have a common agenda to advance freedom and democracy in the world. That is the message that US President George Bush is bringing to Slovakia, US National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley said at a press conference in Washington DC February 17.

Hadley said that the stop in the Slovak Republic would be a nice opportunity for President Bush to remind Europe and the rest of the world of the progress made in that part of the world, the TASR news service reported.

"It's also an opportunity to pay tribute to the people of the Slovak Republic and other countries in the region for the right choices they made in pursuing democracy and freedom and making the hard choices that those countries had to make as they moved out of Communist regimes," Hadley told journalists.

By acknowledging their contribution, President Bush wants to give some hope and support to those people who are advancing the cause of freedom elsewhere in the world.

Hadley said that discussions on visa policy were expected in Bratislava. Since there was progress on the same issue when President Bush met with Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski, that kind of way forward ought to be available to other countries of Central and Eastern Europe.

This would put Washington on the road to settle the visa issue, Hadley added.

Compiled by Spectator staff from press reports

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