The Chairman of the EPP-ED Group in the European Parliament, Hans-Gert Poettering, has welcomed the result of the EU accession referendum in the Slovak Republic. He expressed his warmest congratulations to the people of Slovakia and the EPP-ED sister parties in Slovakia – the Slovak Democratic and Christian Union, the Party of Hungarian Coalition, and the Christian Democratic Movement – for their successful contribution to the referendum result and their commitment to a European identity based on Christian values.
„I am delighted that the people of Slovakia under the Government of Mikuláš Dzurinda made the right choice to join our Union, to become part of a Europe finally re-united. It is a historic success and significant day for the people of Slovakia. Since the 1989 Velvet revolution and consequently the independence of Slovakia in 1993 the Slovak people have stood the test of the difficult times as well.
„Our EPP sister parties in Slovakia are the only ones who gave a new political direction to the Slovak people but also the only ones who represent, at an international level, a force for stability and sure and trustworthy partners. That matters.
„Today the Slovak Republic can take its rightful place at the heart of an Enlarged Union based on democratic principles, law and a respect for human and minority rights“, declared Hans-Gert Poettering.
The EPP-ED Group has contributed substantially to make sure that the candidate countries join the Union in time to participate in the European elections of 2004. The European Parliament voted for the 10 accession countries to enter the Union on 1 May 2004. Under Mikuláš Dzurinda, Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic, Slovakia signed the EU accession treaties in Athens on April 16, 2003.
Until the first European elections in Slovakia to be held in June 2004, 7 Observers from the three EPP sister parties in Slovakia will participate at the work of the European Parliament, all sitting in the EPP-ED Group.
Further information from:
Atilla Agardi, Tel +32 475 750272
Katrin Ruhrmann, Tel, +32 475 493357