Facts about Slovakia

Central Europe


Parliamentary republic




49,035 sq km

CET / GMT+1.00


History of Slovakia

Velvet Revolution (1989)

Various environmental and religious movements arose during the 1980s as a result of the political changes in the USSR under the leadership of Mikhail Sergeyevich Gorbachyov. On March 25, 1988, the “Candle Manifestation” at Hviezdoslav Square in Bratislava was quickly suppressed when police used truncheons and water canons to disperse the peaceful protesters who demanded religious freedom. In November 1989 police again brutally repressed student manifestations in Bratislava and in Prague: on November 16, 1989 the Slovak university students demanded civil rights and civil liberties as well as the release of political prisoners and one day later, on November 17, 1989 police clashed with the protesters in Prague. The November events triggered a series of events that foreshadowed the end of the totalitarian regime and the fall of the  “Iron Curtain” dividing the East from the West. Universities went on strike and soon the actors, artists, and dissidents followed. The opposition in the Czech Republic formed the Civic Forum while the Public Against Violence was created in Slovakia. On November 27, 1989 a nationwide general strike was held, and two days later, on November 29, 1989, President Gustav Husak signed the law that abolished the Article 4 of the constitution about the supremacy of the Communist Party in the society.  A playwright and dissident Vaclav Havel became a new president of Czechoslovakia. At the beginning of December 1989, the borders between the East and the West opened and the infamous “Iron Curtain” fell.

Czech and Slovak Federative Republic

In 1990 the Federal Assembly acknowledged the name of the country as the Czech and Slovak Federative Republic. In the first democratic elections held on June 8-9, 1990, the Public Against Violence emerged a clear winner in Slovakia. The pressing need for a change in economy resulted in economic reforms and privatization. On July 17, 1992, the Slovak National Council declared the independence of the Slovak Republic (Declaration of the Independence of the Slovak Republic). On September 1, 1992, the Constitution of the Slovak Republic was adopted, and on November 25, 1992 the Federal Assembly passed a constitutional act that officially terminated the Czech and Slovak Federative Republic.

Slovak Republic As an Independent State

The Slovak Republic was officially recognized as an independent state on January 1, 1993 with Michal Kovac as its president. On January 19, 1993 Slovakia became a United Nations member state and on June 30, 1993 it joined the European Council.
President Rudolf Suster succeeded Michal Kovac in 1999. The current president of the Slovak Republic is Ivan Gasparovic. Vladimir Meciar, a leader of the Movement for a Democratic Slovakia (HZDS), was the Prime Minister in times of the new state formation. His government resigned in March 1994 and was replaced by the coalition under the leadership of Jozef Moravcik.  Early elections in the fall of 1994 made Vladimir Meciar, the leader of the winning HZDS, once again the Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic. Leader of the Slovak Democratic Coalition (Christian Democratic Movement-KDH, Democratic Union –DU, Democratic Party-DS, Social Democratic Party-SDSS, and Green Party-SZ) Mikulas Dzurinda replaced Meciar in 1997. Currently, Robert Fico is the Prime Minister of the Slovak Republic. One of the most important events  in history of an independent Slovakia  was  the Pope John Paul’s II visit to our country in 1995.
Slovakia is a member of many international organizations - the United Nations, International Monetary Fund, World Bank, UNESCO, and European Council. On May 1, 1004 Slovak Republic joined the European Union. It has been the NATO member since March 29, 2004.  On December 21, 2007 the Slovak Republic became a party to the Schengen Agreement.

Czechoslovak Socialist Republic History of Slovakia Slovakia History

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