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Czechoslovakia Denies Plans for a Palestinian Consulate

February 19, 1991
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Czechoslovak Foreign Ministry has denied knowledge of plans to open a Palestinian consulate in Bratislava, capital of the Slovak republic.

Ministry spokesman Egon Lansky told the official news agency CTK that he knew nothing of such preparations. He stressed that consular relations lie exclusively in the province of the federal Foreign Ministry.

Nevertheless, speculation has been rife since CTK reported the visit to Bratislava last month by a representative of the Palestine Liberation Organization, Sameh Abdullah Fattah.

His host was the chairman of the Slovak National Council, Frantisek Miklosko, who apparently received Fattah as an “ambassador.”

The PLO man was recognized as such by the former Communist regime, which entered diplomatic relations with the Palestinian state proclaimed by the Palestine National Council in 1988.

According to the CTK report, Miklosko and his guest “expressed hope that a consulate of the state of Palestine will be opened at an early date in Bratislava and that conditions will be created for cooperation between the Slovak National Council and the Palestine National Council.”

The Prague weekly Respekt quoted Miklosko as telling it that “the Palestinian ambassador informed me that in Bratislava a consulate will be established. About relations between the Slovak and Palestinian national councils we did not speak at all.”

The Slovak deputy minister of foreign relations, Roman Zelenay, said the PLO representative told him that “Palestine” considered opening a consulate in Bratislava “necessary and useful.”

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