May 20. 2024. 10:48

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Slovak government says parliament must decide on jets delivery to Ukraine


The delivery of grounded Soviet-made MiG29 fighter jets must first be discussed in the National Council, Defence Minister Jaroslav Naď confirmed Sunday after several lawyers and politicians doubted the interim government’s authority to decide on the matter single-handedly.

Since losing the no-confidence vote in December, the cabinet of Prime Minister Eduard Heger (OĽaNO) is tasked to guide Slovakia until the snap elections in September.

“When it comes to deciding on the delivering the MiGs to Ukraine and under what conditions, we will first discuss it in Parliament,” said Naď, acknowledging that while he believes the government still has the authority to decide on such a matter, the government ministers have differing opinions.

“The acting government of the Slovak Republic does not have the competence to decide on fundamental foreign policy issues,” said the Constitutional Court’s former president, Ján Mazák.

At the same time, parties in parliament are also divided on the delivery of jets, with former Prime Minister Robert Fico and his Smer-SD party being the most opposed.

While Fico warned that delivering jets to Ukraine would drag Slovakia into the conflict, Naď rejected this, saying there would be no threat of Russian retaliation. Slovakia will be either financially or materially reimbursed for the donation by the European Commission.

Slovakia has 11 Soviet-made MiG-29 fighter jets which have been grounded since September. These can still be functional for Ukrainians as there is a factory where specific spare parts can be made.

(Michal Hudec | EURACTIV.sk)