- Hans Weber
- December 7, 2023
Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala and Slovak PM Ludovit Odor Discuss Energy, Defence, and Ukraine Crisis in Prague Meeting
Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala, of the Civic Democratic Party (ODS), welcomed Slovak Prime Minister Ludovit Odor to the Kramar Villa in Prague today for bilateral talks. The leaders engaged in discussions on various topics, including energy and defence cooperation, the ongoing situation in Ukraine, and the upcoming NATO summit in Vilnius. Following their meeting, Odor also had scheduled talks with President Petr Pavel later in the day.
Fiala’s office stated that in addition to defence, Ukraine, and NATO, the prime ministers would address common European challenges such as migration, the Euro 7 emissions standard, and the revision of the European Union’s long-term budget. A joint press conference was held at the government office to provide updates on the outcomes of their discussions.
Odor assumed leadership of Slovakia’s caretaker government in mid-May, and he and Fiala previously held talks in late May during the Globsec international security conference in Bratislava. Last week, a meeting of the Visegrad Four prime ministers, comprising the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and Poland, took place in Bratislava, with Odor hosting Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki alongside Fiala.
Having recently taken over the V4 presidency from Slovakia, the Czech Republic aims to build upon the previous presidency’s efforts to reinforce cooperation based on the principles of human rights, freedom, and democracy. The Czech presidency emphasized the importance of providing clear and unwavering support for Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity amidst the ongoing Russian invasion since February.
During the press conference following the meeting with PM Odor, Fiala urged Poland and Hungary not to obstruct the EU migration deal that was recently agreed upon. Both leaders agreed that a European-level solution is necessary and expressed concern over the obstructionism displayed by Poland and Hungary at the European Council meeting last week.
Furthermore, Fiala commended the improved cooperation between the Czech Republic and Slovakia regarding refugee flows, emphasizing its significance in preventing the reinstatement of border controls. He highlighted that both countries share the same stance on illegal migration and the importance of strengthening the protection of the EU’s external borders and enhancing the return policy.
The meeting between Prime Minister Fiala and Prime Minister Odor signifies the commitment of both countries to collaboration, addressing regional and European challenges, and supporting Ukraine in the face of the ongoing crisis. It demonstrates the significance of diplomatic efforts and cooperation among neighboring nations to promote stability, security, and shared values in the region.
Article by Prague Forum
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- Hans Weber
- December 7, 2023