Mrs. Clinton Visiting Slovakia
BRATISLAVA, Slovakia (AP) _ Hillary Rodham Clinton arrived on her second visit to Slovakia today to praise the efforts of several pro-democracy organizations who helped oust the former authoritarian regime.
Mrs. Clinton is to meet Slovak President Rudolf Schuster and Prime Minister Mikulas Dzurinda, who have brought Slovakia closer to Europe, following five years of authoritarian rule.
On the first lady’s initial visit to Slovakia three years ago, she met only with pro-democracy groups, who were struggling against the regime of then-Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar.
During this trip, she plans to applaud the groups’ efforts and to work in bringing about the changes that have made Slovakia a leading candidate for European Union membership.
On Tuesday, Mrs. Clinton visited Poland, where she met with President Aleksander Kwasniewski and focused on women’s rights and economic development in Eastern Europe.
She met with female entrepreneurs at a textile factory, where she praised Poland for leading the way in economic reforms among the nations of the former Soviet bloc since communist rule collapsed 10 years ago.
After Slovakia, Mrs. Clinton continues to Italy and Iceland, where she will take part in this year’s Vital Voices conference focusing on women’s participation in democracy.