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Slovakia PM Robert Fico stable after further surgery

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Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico is in a serious but stable condition following further surgery, the country’s health minister has said.

Mr Fico, 59, was gravely injured in an attack in the small town of Handlova on Wednesday.

Officials said it was unlikely he can be moved back to Bratislava in the next few days.

Meanwhile, the man charged with attempting to murder Mr Fico has arrived in court.

Interior Minister Matus Sutaj Estok said on Thursday the suspect had acted alone and previously taken part in anti-government protests.

Mr Fico was shot four times in the stomach and arm at close range as he greeted supporters, and his injuries were said to be extensive and complicated.

He is understood to have undergone a number of surgeries, including the latest to remove dead tissue.

Mr Fico’s shooting has left Slovakia tense and deeply polarised. Deputy Prime Minister Robert Kalinak has called for the country to embark on a path of tolerance and accused the opposition and the media of stirring up hatred.

For over six months the political climate in the country has been particularly hostile – although the divisions date back to at least 2018, when a journalist investigating high-level corruption claims was murdered.

Mr Fico was forced to step down then, amid giant protests.

His re-election last year was a major comeback achieved on a platform that included promises to end military aid to Kyiv and veto Ukraine’s Nato ambitions, as well as other talk more reminiscent of Moscow than Brussels.


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