Press Releases

    UNIS/INF/109
    19 October 2005

    United Nations in Focus at Open House Day at the Slovak Ministry of Foreign Affairs

    VIENNA, 19 October (UN Information Service) - The United Nations, in particular Slovakia's election to the Security Council, will be the theme of the Open House Day at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Slovak Republic, to be held on Saturday, 22 October in Bratislava, Slovakia.

    Hosted by the Slovak Minister of Foreign Affairs Eduard Kukan, the Open House Day will give the public a backstage view of Slovak diplomacy. Visitors will have the opportunity to see the offices of the Slovak diplomatic headquarters and watch a model meeting of the Ministry's senior officials. The Foreign Minister and Secretaries of State Magdaléna Vášaŕyová and József Berényi will be present to meet visitors and give autographs. Special guests will include the Portuguese football legend Eusébio da Silva Ferreira and the popular Slovak singer Jana Kirschner. Visitors will have the chance to show their creativity in a competition for the design of a new logo for the Ministry. There will be a special "foreign edition" of the well-known Slovak television quiz programme Bumerang, with the moderator Adela Banášová, in which Foreign Minister Kukan and senior officials of the Ministry will be the contestants. In the adjacent Palugyai Palace, there will be an exhibition of pastels by Karol Baron and the paper world of the designer Karol Krčmár. The younger visitors can look forward to artistic face-painting, and tasting fresh fruit juices and chocolates from all over the world.

    On the topic of the United Nations, there will be presentations on Slovakia and the United Nations, including an interactive briefing on Slovakia's path to the UN Security Council, and a discussion titled "Slovakia helps the world", on the topic of development cooperation. The United Nations Information Service Vienna will be represented with an information booth, at which visitors can collect information material and speak to United Nations staff about the work of the Organization, as well as about the nearby United Nations headquarters in Vienna, Austria, at which visitors are also welcome to take guided tours.

    The United Nations theme was selected on the occasion of Slovakia's election to the United Nations Security Council, where the country will serve for a two-year term beginning 1 January 2006. The General Assembly elected Slovakia on 10 October, along with four other non-permanent members, according to a  pre-set geographical mandate. Members must obtain at least two-thirds of the ballots cast in order to be elected to the Council. The Council has 15 members, five permanent and 10 non-permanent. The five permanent members are China, France, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Each Council member, regardless of status, has one vote. The Security Council votes on matters of particular significance to Member States, and its decisions are not considered voluntary or suggested, but rather compulsory mandates. Decisions on procedural matters require a "yes" vote from nine Council members, and on substantive matters, nine votes plus concurring votes of all five permanent members.

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    The Open House Day of the Slovak Ministry of Foreign Affairs
    Place: Hlboká cesta 2, Bratislava, Slovakia
    Date: 22 October 2005, 9:30-14:30 hours

    For further information, visit the homepage of the Slovak Foreign Ministry at:

    http://www.foreign.gov.sk