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Slovakia’s prime minister wounded in shooting

Messenger Online

Published: 20:53, 15 May 2024

Update: 21:13, 15 May 2024

Slovakia’s prime minister wounded in shooting

Slovakia’s Prime Minister Robert Fico. Photo: Collected 

Slovakia’s populist Prime Minister Robert Fico was wounded in a shooting Wednesday (15 May) afternoon and taken to hospital.

Reports on TA3, a Slovakian TV station, said that Fico, 59, was hit in the stomach after four shots were fired outside the House of Culture in the town of Handlova, some 150 kilometers northeast of the capital, where the leader was meeting with supporters. A suspect has been detained, it said. Police sealed off the scene.

Deputy speaker of parliament Lubos Blaha confirmed the incident during a session of Parliament and adjourned it until further notice, the Slovak TASR news agency said.

President Zuzana Caputova condemned “a brutal and ruthless” attack on the premier.

“I’m shocked,” Caputova said. “I wish Robert Fico a lot of strength in this critical moment and a quick recovery from this attack.”

Fico, a third-time premier, and his leftist Smer, or Direction, party, won Slovakia's Sept. 30 parliamentary elections, staging a political comeback after campaigning on a pro-Russian and anti-American message.

Critics worried Slovakia under Fico would abandon the country’s pro-Western course and follow the direction of Hungary under populist Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.

Thousands have repeatedly rallied in the capital and across Slovakia to protest Fico’s policies.

Messenger/Sumon

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