Slovakia's government apologized on Wednesday for World War II legislation that stripped the country's Jews of their human and civil rights.
Marking the 80th anniversary of the "Jewish Code" adopted on Sept 9, 1941, the government said in a statement that it "feels a moral obligation today to publicly express sorrow over the crimes committed by the past regime."
The code also prevented access of the Jews to education and authorized the transfer of their property to non-Jewish owners.
The government said the anniversary is an opportunity to remember the crimes against Slovak Jews.
Slovakia was a Nazi puppet state during World War II. It sent over 70,000 of its Jewish citizens to Nazi concentration camps, where most of them perished.
The code is considered one of the toughest anti-Jew laws adopted in Europe during the war.
The Eastern European country has fostered close diplomatic and military ties with Israel in recent years.
Slovak Foreign Minister Ivan Korčok arrived in Israel in May at the invitation of then-foreign minister Gabi Ashkenazi alongside other European diplomats in a show of solidarity with the Jewish state amidst its last war with Gaza Strip terrorist factions.
Ashkenazi hosted a tour for the diplomats at a site where rockets fell in Petah Tikva in the center of the country to see “the reality for residents of Israel in the center of the country this last week and for residents of the south for much longer.”
Korčok then stated that Slovakia recognized Israel’s right to protect its citizens against attacks of Hamas and other militant groups.
In April, Bratislava agreed to purchase 17 Israeli-made radar systems for NIS 500 million as part of a defense export agreement with Jerusalem.
Defense Minister Benny Gantz hailed the move and called it "evidence of the deepening cooperation with NATO countries."
Yoav Zitun and TPS contributed to this story.