Čaputová visits Prague

On Thursday, Slovak President Zuzana Čaputová arrived for her first official visit to the Czech Republic and Czech President Miloš Zeman welcomed her at Prague Castle, the presidential seat, with military honors.

President Zeman thanked Čaputová for supporting the idea of building a Czech House in Bratislava, adding that he hopes to complete the project by the end of this year. The Slovak President confirmed that Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini promised to provide the necessary financial support.

Čaputová invited Zeman to Slovakia. According to her, the Presidents and delegations did not come across any conflicting issues, and they agreed on foreign policy, the issues of the European Union and the Visegrad Group as well.

"My interest in this group is to continue building the closest possible relationship between the V4 countries," Čaputová said. According to her, the meaning of the V4 was not exhausted by joining the EU; it should continue looking for other common topics.

According to the Presidents, the Czech Republic and Slovakia could jointly commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution in November. "For our part, I can promise that we will do everything we can so that representatives of both countries could attend the celebrations,” Čaputová said. 

Besides President Zeman, Defense Minister Lubomír Metnar, Minister of Industry Karel Havlíček and Transport Minister Vladimír Kremlík welcomed Čaputová to Prague Castle. 

In the afternoon, Čaputová met with the leaders of both chambers of the Czech Parliament. According to the President of the Senate, Jaroslav Kubera, the meeting took place in a very good atmosphere. Kubera also pointed out that bilateral Czech-Slovak relations are so good that there are not many questions left to address. Čaputová then had a half-hour meeting with the Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, Radek Vondráček, who praised the President as very likable and open. The debate in the Chamber concerned primarily legal matters and justice.

In addition to the official program, Čaputová also met with the Slovak community in Prague, laid flowers at the grave of the first post-revolution Czechoslovak president Václav Havel, and in the evening, she attended a concert held in her honor.

Čaputová took office on Saturday replacing Andrej Kiska. It is a tradition that Slovak Presidents head to the Czech Republic for their first foreign trip and vice versa. Čaputová said that for her, this tradition is an expression of a long common history and close personal relationships between the inhabitants of both countries.

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