THREE Slovak nationals were on board the Air France Airbus A330-200 that crashed in the Atlantic Ocean off the Brazilian cost on a flight from Rio de Janeiro to Paris late on May 31, according to the passenger list.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Ján Škoda said that based on the information obtained from the Slovak Embassy in Paris and Air France, an emergency team set up by the ministry to deal with such situations decided to adopt immediate measures to secure prompt information for families of the missing passengers and to provide necessary assistance in cooperation with other state bodies, the SITA newswire reported.
Among the Slovaks who were flying on the missing aeroplane was Daniel Benčať, the former mayor of the village of Kozárovce, near Levice, and his friend, businessman Michal Hudec.
According to the Sme daily, the two men were visiting Slovak missionaries in Brazil. As mayor, Benčať had been to the country several times and actively promoted it in his village.
The third Slovak, whose name appeared on a list of the 228 missing people, is 33-year-old Arnold Gergeľ from the village of Ipeľské Úľany in the Levice district, the Sme daily reported.
Gergeľ, who previously served as a policeman and a guard at the Government Office in Bratislava had been living in Dublin for the last five years. He was reportedly on his way back home from a holiday in Rio de Janeiro.