Foreign Minister Petříček: The V4 has something to offer Europe

The Visegrad Group is important and has more to offer than just an anti-immigration group of countries, said Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs Tomáš Petříček at the conference commemorating the hundredth anniversary of Czech diplomacy.

According to Slovak Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajčák, the V4 isn’t an anti-European group and it’s unfortunate that it has a negative image in Europe. He added that it now requires a lot of work to prove the V4 isn’t just an anti-immigration grouping of countries but can also be a part of European solutions.

Petříček believes that under the current Slovak V4 presidency it has already started to change, as it is trying come up with constructive ideas and thoughts on improving and helping the EU. Visegrad had been missing a more positive agenda until now, Petříček added.

The V4 should get back to the values it was founded upon back in the 1990s, said the Czech Foreign Minister. According to Petříček, the Visegrad Group wasn’t just meant for its members to quickly return to Europe, but there was also an intention to consolidate democracy in the four countries and anchor human rights in them.

Both ministers agreed that the V4 offers a great foundation for cooperation of the Central European countries and its existence within the EU is just as legitimate as the existence of Benelux for example. The parties mentioned other formats of cooperation as well, like the Slavkov Declaration.