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The condition of the Slovak Prime Minister is out of danger, but would remain serious

Photo: Agence France-Presse After suffering multiple gunshot wounds in an assassination attempt, he is now out of danger.

Lefteris Pitarakis – Associated Press Banská Bystrica, Slovakia

Posted at 3:51 p.m.

  • Europe

Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico is now out of danger, having suffered multiple gunshot wounds in an assassination attempt that sent shockwaves through a deeply polarized European country.

Milan Urbani, deputy director of the hospital, confirmed the information to the media on Sunday. “Based on the morning consultation of doctors, we can conclude that the patient is currently out of a life-threatening condition. His condition remains very serious and he needs a lot of rest to heal. »

“The worst of what we feared is over, at least for now. But his condition remains serious,” Defense Minister Robert Kalinak told reporters outside the hospital where Mr. Fico is being treated.

Robert Kalinak added that the hospital treating the Slovak leader in Banská Bystrica will continue to provide updates on his health.

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Robert Fico, 59, was shot in the abdomen as he greeted supporters after a government meeting Wednesday in the former mining town of Handlova, officials said. The suspect fired five shots before being tackled to the ground and arrested.

On Friday, Mr. Fico underwent surgery for two hours to remove dead tissue from his multiple gunshot wounds, but he was still not well enough to go to a hospital in the capital, Bratislava, officials said Saturday.

The Specialized criminal court in the city of Pezinok on Saturday ordered the alleged attacker, accused of attempted murder, to remain behind bars. Prosecutors feared he might flee or commit other crimes if released, a court spokesperson said.

Little information about the would-be killer has been released after prosecutors asked police not to publicly identify him.

Unconfirmed reports in media named him and said he was a 71-year-old retiree known as an amateur poet who may have worked as a shopping mall security guard.

A politically motivated attack

Government authorities have provided details that match this description. They said the suspect did not belong to any political group, although the attack itself was politically motivated.

Robert Fico warned on Facebook last month that he believed growing tensions in the country could lead to the assassination of politicians and he accused the media of fueling tensions in the country of 5.4 million. inhabitants.

President Peter Pellegrini, an ally of Mr. Fico, declared on Sunday that Slovakia was a “wounded country” following the assassination attempt.

“In these difficult times, each of us decides by our actions whether these wounds will heal or whether other wounds will aggravate them,” he said in a video posted on Facebook.

In his speech on Sunday, Mr. Kalinak also stressed that lessons must be learned from the violent attack on the leader, who has long been a divisive figure in Slovakia and beyond. “We must remember this. If we don’t learn, we will go to hell,” he warned.

At the St. Francis Xavier Cathedral in Banská Bystrica on Sunday, lawyer Pavel Bachleda called the assassination attempt a “great tragedy,” but also expressed concerns about the way Mr. Fico and his party are handling themselves. have behaved in recent years.

“I would say that in part also his actions, his actions in the previous months and years, caused the situation in our country and the tension […] among the population,” he told the Associated Press.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116