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Slovakia PM shooting latest: Putin ally Robert Fico in life-threatening condition after assassination attempt

Slovakian PM shot and wounded in broad daylight attack

Slovakia’s populist Prime Minister Robert Fico is in a life-threatening condition after he was shot in the stomach and taken to hospital.

Reports said that Fico, 59, was injured after four shots were fired outside the House of Culture in the town of Handlova where the leader was meeting with supporters.

A witness said he heard several shots and that he saw a man being detained by police. After being treated briefly at a local hospital, Fico was airlifted to Banska Bystrica Hospital where he was pictured being carried on a guerney.

Peter Pellegrini, Slovakia’s president-elect and an ally of Mr Fico, has said that “an assassination attempt on the Prime Minister is a threat to everything that has adorned Slovak democracy so far.”

Mr Fico, a well-known ally of Russian president Vladimir Putin, is known for his tirades against journalists. He has previously labeled a major television network, two nationwide newspapers and an online news site his enemies and said he won’t communicate with them.

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Nato secretary general wishes Fico a ‘speedy recovery’

The Nato secretary general has condemned the attack as Robert Fico remains in hospital in a life-threatening condition.

Jens Stoltenberg said on X: “Shocked and appalled by the shooting of Prime Minister Robert Fico. I wish him strength for a speedy recovery. My thoughts are with Robert Fico, his loved ones, and the people of Slovakia.”

Holly Evans15 May 2024 16:44

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Sir Keir Starmer says assassination attempt is ‘shocking news’

Sir Keir Starmer has called the assassination attempt on Robert Fico “shocking news”.

In a short statement on X, the Labour Party leader added: “My thoughts are with Robert Fico and his family.”

Holly Evans15 May 2024 16:27

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In pictures: Robert Fico being transported to hospital

Pictures have just been released of Robert Fico being transported into hospital after suffering life-threatening injuries in a shooting.

The Slovak prime minister has been covered by a white sheet while multiple emergency service workers push the hospital bed.

Mr Fico arrived at the Banska Bystrica Hospital after being transported via air ambulance from Handlova.

Slovak prime minister Robert Fico is wheeled into hospital in Banska Bystrica after being wounded in a shooting in Handlova (AP)
He was taken by helicopter to a second hospital to undergo further treatment (AP)

Holly Evans15 May 2024 16:13

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What do we know so far?

Here’s a recap of everything we know about the shooting so far:

  • Slovakia’s prime minister Robert Fico was shot multiple times during a visit to the town of Handlova where he was seen greeting supporters moments before the attack.
  • The 59-year-old Putin ally was rushed to a local hospital and has now been airlifted to Banská Bystrica hospital.
  • He is in a life-threatening condition, with the next few hours said to be crucial.
  • A man was detained at the scene and is in police custody.
  • European leaders have condemned the attack, with Rishi Sunak saying: “Shocked to hear this awful news. All our thoughts are with Prime Minister Fico and his family.”
  • The shooting comes just three weeks before the crucial European Union Parliament elections.

Holly Evans15 May 2024 16:08

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Where did the attack happen?

Holly Evans15 May 2024 16:00

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Slovakian parliament suspended after PM Robert Fico shot

Slovakian parliament suspended after PM Robert Fico shot-.mp4

Holly Evans15 May 2024 15:55

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Ursula von der Leyen condemns ‘vile attack’

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen condemned what she described as a “vile attack.”

“Such acts of violence have no place in our society and undermine democracy, our most precious common good,” von der Leyen said in a post on X.

Holly Evans15 May 2024 15:54

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Fico being taken to hospital in Bratislava by helicopter

Robert Fico has received treatment at a hospital in the town of Handlova and is being airlifted to hospital in the capital.

“Mr Fico was brought into our hospital and he was treated at our vascular surgery clinic,” hospital director Marta Eckhardtova said, adding: “The prime minister was later transported from our hospital, he is on his way to Bratislava.”

A government spokesperson said he was being transported by helicopter to a hospital in Bratislava.

Prime Minister of Slovakia, Robert Fico, is being taken to a hospital in Bratislava via helicopter (Leon Neal/PA) (PA Archive)

Holly Evans15 May 2024 15:46

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Slovak president to give statement

Slovakia’s outgoing president Zuzana Caputova is due to make a statement in connection with the attack on Robert Fico at 4:45pm local time (3.45pm in the UK).

This will be followed by a press conferece with the Ministry of Health, the Interior and the Chief of Police in Banská Bystrica at 5pm local time (4pm in the UK).

Holly Evans15 May 2024 15:43

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Ukraine’s Zelensky condemns ‘appalling’ attack on Robert Fico

Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky has condemned the attack on Putin’s ally Robert Fico, and expressed solidarity with Slovakia.

In a statement on X, he said: “The attack on Slovakia’s Prime Minister Robert Fico is appalling. We strongly condemn this act of violence against our neighboring partner state’s head of government.

“Every effort should be made to ensure that violence does not become the norm in any country, form, or sphere. We sincerely hope Robert Fico recovers soon and express our solidarity with the people of Slovakia.”

Slovakia, which shares a border with Ukraine, had previously staunch supporter of Kyiv since Russia invaded in February 2022, donating arms and opening its borders for refugees fleeing the war.

However, Mr Fico stopped that military aid once he came to power and opposes EU sanctions on Russia while wanting to block Ukraine from joining Nato.

Holly Evans15 May 2024 15:39


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