Chapter II - Part 3
Personal Diplomacy
UCI ~ I See You
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Banquet In Honour Of President Novotny
Nov. 15, 1966
President Antonin Novotny and Madame Bozena Novotny

It is Our great pleasure to greet this evening the leader of a great and friendly nation, a country
with which Ethiopia has long enjoyed close ties and with which a special sympathy and
understanding exist.  We take this opportunity to welcome Your Excellency and your wife to
Ethiopia.

Seven years ago in response to Your Excellency's invitation, We had the pleasure of visiting your
beautiful country and the friendly people of Czechoslovakia.  We vividly recall the warm and
cordial welcome accorded to Us by the people of Czechoslovakia and members of your
government.  During Our visit We were able to witness the great achievements accomplished by
your people in the field of science and technology.  The bonds of friendship that so happily exist
between Ethiopia and Czechoslovakia are of longstanding.  During this period our two countries
have co-operated in many fields both in times of war and peace.

Ethiopia and Czechoslovakia have much in common.  Both our countries had a similar experience
in the resistance against cruel and merciless aggressor whose motive was to put our peoples under
its colonial domination.  During the dark hours Czechoslovakia was among the very few countries
that courageously raised its voice in denouncing the invasion of Our country by the fascist
aggressor.  In doing so, Czechoslovakia gave Us support not only in upholding our rightful cause at
the League of Nations but has also supported Us with the much needed arms and ammunitions for
the defence of Our beloved country against the invader.  In the early part of the post-war period,
when We commenced to reorganize Our Armed Forces, it was from Czechoslovakia that We were
able to purchase modern weapons to equip Our army.  In view of this, can one expect greater
friendship?  All these manifest the prevalence of a long and profound friendship between our two
countries.
Old True Friend
At present Ethiopia and Czechoslovakia are co-operating in many fields.  The Government of
Czechoslovakia is actively participating in the implementation of Our Five-year Plan by providing
Us with assistance.  As a result of such co-operation the age-old relations that exist between our
two countries have been strengthened.  On this occasion We would like once again to reaffirm to
Your Excellency that Ethiopia considers Czechoslovakia an old and a true friend.  We wish to say
here that in Our endeavours We strive not only for the progress and happiness of our countries and
people but to humanity at large for the cause of world peace.

In Our age man has replaced his individualistic attitude by a larger cause, namely the good of
society.  This is encouraging.  The method employed to achieve the social and economic objectives
that each country sets for itself may differ.  The cultural and historical background of each country
accounts for this difference.  A few years back, due to this economic and social difference the
relations between countries had deteriorated to such an extent that men were fearful of a third
world war.  Today this fear has diminished and the people of the world are hopeful for a better and
a more secure tomorrow.  It is our duty to work for the realization of this noble objective.

In Our view differences in economic and social systems should not give rise to mistrust and
misunderstanding among nations.  On the contrary, We should accept diversity in culture and
tradition and coexist peacefully.  Though Your Excellency's visit to Ethiopia is short, We are
convinced that it will contribute to the promotion of this objective as well as further the
long-standing friendship which exists between our two countries.

We are hopeful that Your Excellency's stay in Our country will be a pleasant one.  Let us, therfore,
raise our glasses for His Excellency's long life and happinesss, that of Madame Novotna and for the
continued progress and prosperity of our two peoples.
Haile Selassie the First - November 15, 1966