Pellegrini: Voice Will Support NATO Troops Presence if Their Role Is to Protect

8. marca 2022 15:54
Bratislava, March 8 (TASR) - Independent MPs operating in the extra-parliamentary Voice-SD party will support potential presence of NATO troops on Slovak territory, if their role is to protect the country and thus the whole Alliance, party leader and ex-premier Peter Pellegrini told a news conference on Tuesday. At the same time Pellegrini called on the Government not to forget about domestic problems in addition to addressing the refugee crisis and the situation in Ukraine. He urged Premier Eduard Heger (OLaNO) to inform MPs at the beginning of the March parliamentary session about the plans for Slovakia to cope with the current situation. "Voice-SD will agree with the presence of NATO troops in Slovakia if they are not tasked with attacking, but protecting a NATO member state, and thus the whole of NATO," stated Pellegrini. He spoke about responsibility and signal to partners. "We are in NATO, we share our rights and duties," he added. Pellegrini pointed, for example, to commitments to increase the country's defence expenditure. In connection with the aid to Ukraine in the form of military material, he asks whether Slovakia has enough material left for its own protection. According to him, it is okay if the Government decides on such an aid. However, he underlined the need not to empty warehouses and to think about the defence of Slovakia should the conflict spread. Pellegrini noted that the world has not stopped with the war in Ukraine and that Slovakia continues to face serious problems. He recommended the Government to take the situation more comprehensively and return home from international politics. "In order for solidarity with those in need to be as sustainable as possible, it is important that the government strives to maintain a balance between what needs to be addressed east of us and what needs to be addressed at home," he said. According to him, Voice-SD supports Slovakia's positions at the international level, however, the Government must also consider national interests in difficult situations. He stressed that the COVID-19 disease has not disappeared and the problems of the Slovak healthcare system haven't disappeared, either. He asked whether it is able to provide health care to everyone without distinction, so that people within solidarity are not preferred to the citizens of Slovakia. The Voice-SD leader hasn't clearly said whether they differ in opinions with Smer-SD so much that they would be unable to cooperate. "If Smer-SD starts to behave more radically than it did, the scissors between us will open even more," he said. The party only rules out OLaNO and far-right LSNS from cooperation for now. ko/mcs
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