ON MAY 30, Slovakia commemorated the 90th anniversary of the signing of the Pittsburgh Agreement, the declaration by Czech and Slovak Americans, as well as Czechoslovak statesman Tomáš Garrygue Masaryk, which set out their aspiration for an independent republic and paved the way for the creation of Czechoslovakia, the SITA newswire wrote.
“I am very glad that I can commemorate the 90th anniversary of the signing of the Pittsburgh Agreement, a symbol of strong ties between the United States and Slovakia,” said US Ambassador to Slovakia Vincent Obsitnik on the anniversary. The original document, signed on May 31, 1918, was presented in the Slovak Parliament on May 30. A copy will tour Slovakia.
According to Foreign Minister Ján Kubiš, the Pittsburgh Agreement is not only a key historical document, which helped lead to today’s independent Slovakia, but one that represents Slovakia’s present and future.
Representatives of the Slovak League in the United States, the Czech National Association and Union of Czech Catholics gathered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to sign the document on May 31, 1918. It became the basis for the establishment of the Czechoslovak Republic.
The agreement announced the intention of Czechs and Slovaks to form a single state with its own administration, parliament and judiciary. Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk, who became the first president of Czechoslovakia, formulated the document’s text.