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Leftist Slovak Party Unveils Cabinet


Slovakia's leftist Smer Party has unveiled the cabinet list for its new coalition government.

Smer, which won 29 percent of the vote in general elections last month, formed a majority coalition with the extreme right-wing National Party and the center-left party led by former authoritarian Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar.

President Ivan Gasparovic is expected to confirm the slate headed Smer leader Robert Fico Tuesday.

The list includes diplomat Jan Kubis as foreign minister and businessman Jan Pociatek in the finance ministry.

Some Slovak intellectuals and diplomats say a government that includes the National Party will hurt the country and will not be welcomed by the West.

However, the Reuters news agency quotes President Gasparovic as saying he sees no reason why he should not endorse the coalition.

The nationalists are known for harsh rhetoric toward the Roma (Gypsy) minority and for criticism of the country's sizable ethnic Hungarian population.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

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