An agreement on financing of the Roman Catholic Church in Slovakia and an agreement on the right to exercise conscientious objection, neither of which have yet been signed between the Holy See and the Slovak Republic, will have to be adopted, the new apostolic nuncio to Slovakia, Mario Giordana, told journalists after presenting his credentials to Slovakia’s President Ivan Gašparovič. According to Archbishop Giordana, the Slovak government has expressed its willingness to continue working on the agreements, part of its Basic Treaty with the Holy See. Archbishop Giordana said that for both sides dialogue, willingness, readiness and respect for specific requirements will be the most important factors in preparing the agreements, the SITA newswire wrote.
Diplomatic relations between The Vatican and Slovakia advanced with the signing of the Basic Treaty between the Holy See and the Slovak Republic on November 24, 2000, in Rome by the-then Prime Minister Mikuláš Dzurinda and the Pope’s Secretary of State, Cardinal Angelo Sodano. The objective of the treaty was to determine relations between Slovakia and the Roman Catholic Church, as well as between the Slovak Republic and the Holy See.
The Basic Treaty comprises four individual agreements. The first, signed on August 21, 2002, is between the Holy See and the Slovak Republic on pastoral care for Catholic believers in the Armed Forces of the Slovak Republic. An agreement on financing the Roman Catholic Church, which would determine to what extent the state supports the Church, has not yet been signed. Nor has an agreement on the rights of conscientious objectors. A disagreement in 2006 among the-then governing coalition over adoption of the treaty led to early elections and Dzurinda’s replacement as prime minister by Robert Fico. SITA
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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4. Jun 2008 at 17:00