SLOVAKIA has seen an intense, yet fair election battle that attested to the strength of the country's democracy, Czech Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka said on Czech Television on March 30 as quoted by the TASR newswire.
Czech head of state Miloš Zeman, who backed Prime Minister Robert Fico in his bid, said that he fully acknowledges the results and congratulated Kiska on his victory.
"I strongly believe that Mr Kiska in his constitutional post will contribute towards the continuation and further development of today's excellent bilateral relations," said Zeman in a statement.
According to Sobotka, this presidential election in Slovakia might be similar to the one in the Czech Republic that took place in January 2013 and from which Zeman emerged victorious.
"I assume that just as Mr Zeman garnered some portion of 'protest' votes, Mr Kiska gained a large share of votes from dissatisfied voters," said Sobotka, who, like Fico, is a social democrat.
Czech Foreign Affairs Minister Lubomír Zaorálek (also of the Czech Social Democratic Party) said that Fico, given his political background, has been a close partner to the Czech Social Democrats. Still, he expressed his belief that no major change in the quality of Czech-Slovak relations will take place as a result of Kiska's presidency.
Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Andrej Babiš, of Slovak origin, said that the election result didn't catch him by surprise. Even the first round of the election - in which Kiska received 24 percent of votes compared to Fico's 28 - showed that Kiska would claim victory in the second round.
Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports.
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information
presented in its Flash News postings.
31. Mar 2014 at 13:30