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Dzurinda: Bush visit appreciation of Slovaks' courage

SLOVAK Prime Minister Mikuláš Dzurinda perceives US President George Bush's visit to Slovakia as appreciation of the will, courage and responsibility that Slovak citizens showed in their march to freedom.

Dzurinda was speaking on Hviezdoslavovo square in Bratislava, immediately prior to the American president's address, the news wire TASR reported.

The visit gives satisfaction to the millions of Slovaks at home and abroad who never lost their desire for freedom, said Dzurinda. It confirms the significance of Slovakia and is encouragement for the country to keep on track.

According to Dzurinda, 2004 was a year in which Slovakia achieved its dreams. It became a fully-fledged member of NATO and the European Union and is now anchored in the world of democratic values.

"Today, Slovakia is, as an independent and sovereign state, a partner, friend and an ally of the USA," stated the Slovak PM.

He added that Slovakia is helping America to solve many difficult global problems.

Compiled by Marta Ďurianová from press reports

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