THE REMAINS of the two Slovak soldiers who were killed in Afghanistan shortly after Christmas were brought to Slovakia on the afternoon of December 29.
The two soldiers, Edmund Makovník from Košice (aged 34) and Patrik Fraštiak from Kysucké Nové Mesto (39), died in the December 27 terrorist attack against a military convoy in Kabul, along with one American soldier.
The two Slovak soldiers were in the leading armoured vehicle, while a Slovak soldier who was sitting in the second vehicle emerged unscathed, Defence Minister Martin Glváč said at a briefing on December 28, as quoted by the TASR newswire.
One trooper was killed instantly during the ambush, while the other died en route to hospital.
“It was a usual routine work, performed many times a day under the command of the lead country - in this case the US,” TASR quoted Glváč as saying. “This was a terrorist attack in which a civilian car full of explosives was probably remotely detonated [when the convoy was passing by].”
The dead soldiers were part of a five-member Slovak group that was making preparations for the arrival of another batch of 78 Slovak soldiers at the military camp close to Kabul, scheduled for January 1, 2014, according to TASR.
The bodies of the two soldiers were brought home on the final stage of the journey from the American Ramstein Air Base in Germany on the Government aircraft, with Prime Minister Robert Fico and Defence Minister Martin Glváč on board, TASR reported. A memorial service was held at Ramstein before departure.
After the arrival of the plane, a ceremony was also held at the Bratislava airport, with the families of the soldiers attending and accepting the condolences of Slovakia’s highest state and military officials.
Both soldiers will be buried with military honours.
Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
30. Dec 2013 at 17:00