Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico Seriously Wounded in Shooting During Government Meeting

Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico Seriously Wounded in Shooting During Government Meeting
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Slo­va­kian Prime Min­is­ter Robert Fico is fight­ing for his life after being shot dur­ing a gov­ern­ment event on Wednes­day after­noon. Accord­ing to his Face­book pro­file, Fico has sus­tained mul­ti­ple gun­shot wounds and is in crit­i­cal condition.

Reports from Slo­va­kian TV sta­tion TA3 state that the 59-year-old prime min­is­ter was hit in the stom­ach after four shots were fired out­side the House of Cul­ture in the town of Handlo­va, where Fico was meet­ing with sup­port­ers. A sus­pect has been detained in con­nec­tion with the attack.

A mes¬≠sage post¬≠ed to Fico‚Äôs offi¬≠cial Face¬≠book account said the prime min¬≠is¬≠ter ‚Äúhas been shot mul¬≠ti¬≠ple times and is cur¬≠rent¬≠ly in life-threat¬≠en¬≠ing con¬≠di¬≠tion.‚ÄĚ It added that Fico was being air¬≠lift¬≠ed to a hos¬≠pi¬≠tal in Ban¬≠sk√° Bystri¬≠ca for emer¬≠gency treat¬≠ment, as the jour¬≠ney to the cap¬≠i¬≠tal Bratisla¬≠va would take too long.

The shock­ing shoot­ing inci­dent comes just three weeks ahead of cru­cial Euro­pean Par­lia­ment elec­tions, in which pop­ulist and right-wing par­ties are expect­ed to make sig­nif­i­cant gains across the 27-nation bloc. Fico him­self leads the left­ist Smer, or Direc­tion, par­ty, which recent­ly staged a polit­i­cal come­back in Slo­va­ki­a’s Sep­tem­ber 2023 par­lia­men­tary elections.

Lead¬≠ers from across Europe were quick to con¬≠demn the ‚Äúvile attack‚ÄĚ on the Slo¬≠va¬≠kian prime min¬≠is¬≠ter. Euro¬≠pean Com¬≠mis¬≠sion Pres¬≠i¬≠dent Ursu¬≠la von der Leyen stat¬≠ed that such acts of vio¬≠lence ‚Äúhave no place in our soci¬≠ety and under¬≠mine democ¬≠ra¬≠cy, our most pre¬≠cious com¬≠mon good.‚ÄĚ

Czech Prime Min¬≠is¬≠ter Petr Fiala called the inci¬≠dent ‚Äúshock¬≠ing,‚ÄĚ adding, ‚ÄúI wish the pre¬≠mier to get well soon. We can¬≠not tol¬≠er¬≠ate vio¬≠lence, there‚Äôs no place for it in soci¬≠ety.‚ÄĚ Pol¬≠ish Prime Min¬≠is¬≠ter Don¬≠ald Tusk also expressed his sup¬≠port, writ¬≠ing on X: ‚ÄúShock¬≠ing news from Slo¬≠va¬≠kia. Robert, my thoughts are with you in this very dif¬≠fi¬≠cult moment.‚ÄĚ

As the inves­ti­ga­tion into the shoot­ing con­tin­ues, the attack on Prime Min­is­ter Fico has sent shock­waves through the Euro­pean polit­i­cal land­scape, high­light­ing the grow­ing ten­sions and polar­iza­tion that have gripped the con­ti­nent in the lead-up to the cru­cial par­lia­men­tary elections.

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