The decision to make Finance Minister Igor Matovič (OĽaNO) continue in talks about the Russian Sputnik V vaccine was pragmatic. It is “a continuation of negotiations” as Matovič was the one who started the discussion, said PM Eduard Heger (OĽaNO) in the political talk show Sobotné Dialógy broadcast by the public-service RTVS.
This is why Heger assigned Matovič to continue in the talks, the PM noted.
He reiterated that to achieve herd immunity, it is necessary to vaccinate as many people as possible. He added that about 500,000 people have said they want to receive the Russian vaccine.
Heger has also confirmed that Slovakia has paid for the batch of 200,000 Sputnik V doses delivered to the country on March 1. He asked to see the confidential agreement on Sputnik V to find out more about the problem.
Slovak diplomacy absent from talks in Budapest
At the same time, Heger expressed his disagreement with the recent statements of OĽaNO MP György Gyimesi, who was present at the talks in Budapest. Gyimesi commented that one of the prerequisites for the successful talks with Hungarians was the absence of the representative of the Slovak embassy.
The claim has already been criticised by Foreign Affairs Minister Ivan Korčok (SaS nominee).
“It’s a rude accusation of the Slovak diplomatic service,” he wrote in a statement, adding that the negotiations in Budapest are questionable since they were attended by an MP who has repeatedly heaped accusations upon Slovak diplomacy rather than Slovak diplomats.
The Slovak Foreign Affairs Ministry meanwhile confirmed that Matovič decided that no representative of the Slovak Embassy in Budapest would attend the meeting, with Korčok claiming that such steps are not traditional.
“Slovak diplomacy is professional and loyal to the interests of Slovakia,” he continued. “Thus, I see no reason for avoiding it when going for foreign business trips.”
Heger commented on RTVS that similar visits are usually secured by the Slovak embassies. He plans to meet with Korčok on April 12.
“I think it is important to have the representatives of embassies at such visits,” he added for RTVS.
Gyimesi is known for his controversial statements and actions. In early March, he took part in the meeting in Komárno, attended by Hungarian Foreign Affairs Minister Péter Szijjártó, Komárno Mayor Béla Keszegh, and the representatives of the Hungarian minority in Slovakia. They discussed the changes to the dual citizenship legislation.