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Outgoing US ambassador praises cooperation with Fico government

US Ambassador to Slovakia Vincent Obsitnik gave his last news conference on Monday, January 19. Obsitnik is leaving after thirteen months in office, as he is a political nominee of President George Bush who spends his last day in the White House today as well, the SITA newswire wrote. The outgoing ambassador, whose roots are in eastern Slovakia, refused to speculate on who will replace him.

US Ambassador to Slovakia Vincent Obsitnik gave his last news conference on Monday, January 19. Obsitnik is leaving after thirteen months in office, as he is a political nominee of President George Bush who spends his last day in the White House today as well, the SITA newswire wrote. The outgoing ambassador, whose roots are in eastern Slovakia, refused to speculate on who will replace him.

“I do not know who will be the ambassador; I do not even know whether they know it in Washington,” Obsitnik said.

The new ambassador is not expected to come to Slovakia sooner than within six months.

Obsitnik praised the cooperation with the Slovak government. He stressed activities that resulted in boosting the Slovak military mission in Afghanistan.

“Slovakia is no longer a recipient country -- it also has started to contribute; one of the proofs is that it doubled the number of its troops in Afghanistan", he told SITA.

Though the ambassador and Prime Minister Robert Fico agreed to differ regarding missile defence in Europe, the government supported it which the ambassador found as most important. The ambassador said it is necessary to view intergovernmental relations as a whole and to not concentrate on just a few things on which they disagreed. Obsitnik said that though they did not always come to an agreement, relations in general were very good and that within the last six months they did not have any serious problem. Deputy chief of the mission Keith Eddins will temporarily replace Obsitnik until the arrival of the new ambassador. SITA

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