Slovakia rejects the admission of Ukraine to NATO and is prepared to veto the country’s accession if necessary, Prime Minister Robert Fico told public radio station RTVS on Saturday.
Fico said he was set to travel to Ukraine on Wednesday to meet his counterpart Denys Shmyhal for talks in the border city of Uzhhorod.
While one reason for the visit was to present a further aid package for Ukraine, he would also make clear the Slovakian positions diverging from Ukraine’s wishes, the premier said.
“I will tell him that we will block and veto Ukrainian accession to NATO, because it would be nothing but the basis for a third world war,” Fico said.
Slovakia, which has been a member of NATO since 2004, was long one of Ukraine’s staunchest supporters in its defensive campaign against the full-scale Russian invasion launched in February 2022.
However, when Fico’s left-wing nationalist government took over last October, it decided to no longer supply Kiev with weapons, though Bratislava continues to send mine-clearing systems and diesel generators in the event of Russian attacks on power plants, for example.
Fico said on Saturday that Slovakia was in favour of Ukraine joining the European Union, as long as the country fulfils the same conditions as other candidates.
The premier, criticized by his opponents as “pro-Russian,” once again emphasized that Slovakia would no longer supply weapons from its army stocks to the neighbouring country, but would continue to allow arms sales by Slovakian defence companies.
There will be no joint press conference following the meeting with Shmyhal because the Ukrainian sides had rejected this, Fico said.