Foreign Affairs Minister Miroslav Lajčák on Thursday, June 17, gave a send off to the outgoing Swedish Ambassador Michael Westerlind as well as to that country's embassy, which is among those being closed down this year in a handful of the EU countries due to budgetary constraints, the TASR newswire wrote.
Lajčák said that in recent weeks he has discussed the shutdown with his Swedish counterpart Carl Bildt. "An embassy smack-dab in a country is the most important tool of development in bilateral relations. Its termination is a fact we have to live with," Lajčák told TASR. He praised Westerlind for his contribution to the development of Slovak-Swedish relations and expressed gratitude for his great cooperation.
Westerlind said he was most impressed by the changes Slovakia went through in the nearly four years of his tenure ... as it moved ahead of all its neighbours, for example, by having managed to adopt the euro. "The very difficult language was the only barrier for me in this friendly country," he said.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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18. Jun 2010 at 10:00