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‘Unnamed shooter isn’t part of a political outfit’

Updated on: 19 May,2024 07:38 AM IST  |  Pezinok
Agencies |

As Roberto Fico recovers, accused presented in court. All parties call shooting an attack on democracy

‘Unnamed shooter isn’t part of a political outfit’

Citizens worried after the attack in Slovakia, walk near the banner saying, ‘Violence is not the way’; (inset) Prime Minister Robert Fico at the chancellery this year. PIC/AP

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‘Unnamed shooter isn’t part of a political outfit’

Man  accused of attempting to assassinate Slovakia Prime Minister, Robert Fico, 59, made his first court appearance, in Pezinok, near Bratislava, on Saturday. Fico was shot multiple times at a government meeting held at Handlova on Wednesday. The suspect was arrested, but his identity remains disclosed, as per prosecutors’ request.

They have requested an order from Slovakia’s Specialised Criminal Court to detain the suspect. Leaders from across the political divide denounced the apparent assassination attempt against the populist and called it an attack on democracy. Government authorities confirm that the suspect does not belong to any political party, but it was politically motivated. 

Meanwhile, after two hours of surgery on Friday, Fico’s condition is now stable.  “Several miracles have occurred in Banská Bystrica in the recent days, coming from the hands of doctors, nurses, and the personnel at the Roosevelt Hospital,” says Defense Minister Robert Kalinak.

Fico’s rival and Slovakia President, Zuzana Čaputová also issued a statement, expressing his view on this attack. “What has happened is something that we cannot seem to realise because we cannot comprehend it. A physical attack on the prime minister is, first of all, an attack on a person, but it is also an attack on democracy. Any violence is unacceptable. The hateful rhetoric we’ve been witnessing in society leads to hateful actions. Please let’s stop it,” says Čaputová, in a televised statement. 

The European Union, however, wonders if the elections can happen in a violent-free manner. “It is shocking to see that someone can become the victim of his political ideas. Three weeks ahead of the elections, that is extremely alarming,” said Prime Minister Alexander De Croo of Belgium, who holds the EU presidency.

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