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Slovakia - History
The borders of the Roman Empire crossed the territory of present day Slovakia. Slavs first arrived in the 6th century. In the 9th century, the first Slavic state – the Great Moravian Empire – was established here. After its demise, Slovakia became a part of the Hungarian Kingdom, and later the Habsburg Empire for over 900 years.
The 19th century saw the culmination of the Slovaks' movement for national rights and the codification of the Slovak language.
1918 the beginning of united Slovak/Czech history. After the end of World War II, the Czechoslovak Republic became a part of the Soviet sphere of influence, and remained a communist dictatorship for 41 years.
Over four decades of totalitarianism in Slovakia ended with the Velvet Revolution of 1989. The infamous Iron Curtain is commemorated by the 'Gate of Liberty' memorial, located on the banks of the Danube in Bratislava. The totalitarian part of Europe was 'only' separated from the free world by the well-guarded river.
On 1 January 1993, two independent countries were founded upon the basis of a peaceful political agreement – the Czech Republic and the Slovak Republic. In this way, Slovakia opened up a new era of its history as a modern, independent, and democratic country.
2004 Slovakia became a part of NATO and the European Union.