All parliamentary parties other than Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) have declared that they want to vote on the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) by the end of this month, Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer) said after roundtable talks with the opposition parties on June 14, the TASR newswire reported.
"We won't postpone the vote on ESM ratification. We want to do it at the upcoming parliamentary session [set to begin on June 19]," Fico stated, as quoted by TASR, adding that Slovakia is an independent and sovereign country and that he would welcome it if some opposition parties ensured that ratification is successful.
Turning to growing rumours that the European Union could be split into a two-stream group in the future, Fico said that Slovakia will do everything it can to be viewed as a reliable and trustworthy partner that can be counted on as part of the more prosperous stream. Fico went on to address the situation in Greece, saying that there would be more advantages than disadvantages if that country remained a part of the eurozone.
However, he added that if the Greeks do not meet their obligations vis-a-vis the bail-out mechanisms and consolidation measures, Slovakia will join those who will want Greece to leave the monetary union. "This is the clear and unambiguous stance of the Slovak government," the prime minister stated.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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