Presidents commemorated Velvet Revolution

PRESIDENTS of Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Germany and Ukraine visited Slovakia for two days to commemorate the fall of communism. A series of commemorating events organised by Slovak President Andrej Kiska culminated in November 17 evening when Kiska gave state honours to fighters for freedom and democracy, the TASR newswire reported.

PRESIDENTS of Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Germany and Ukraine visited Slovakia for two days to commemorate the fall of communism. A series of commemorating events organised by Slovak President Andrej Kiska culminated in November 17 evening when Kiska gave state honours to fighters for freedom and democracy, the TASR newswire reported.

The Velvet Revolution initiated the end of communist rule in the former Czechoslovakia. The result of the process which was set in motion on November 17, 1989 was the transition from the hard-line totalitarian regime imposed after 1968 towards Slovakia’s present multi-party, democratic parliamentary system and market economy, the SITA newswire wrote. The country commemorates the events of 1989 with a public holiday called the Day of the Fight for Freedom and Democracy.

Kiska called November 17 “a totally extraordinary holiday in our calendar and our history among all holidays and important anniversaries”, as quoted by a President’s Office press release. “Our people have reached things which we could not imagine 25 years ago. We are part of 500-million united Europe. For the first time in history we bear direct responsibility for it.”

Kiska commemorated the revolution with Czech President Miloš Zeman, Polish President Bronisław Komorowski, Hungarian President János Áder, German President Joachim Gauck and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko as well as students, politicians and some of main figures of November 17.

Source: TASR, President’s website

Compiled by Roman Cuprik from press reports
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