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What we know about attempt to assassinate Slovakia’s Prime Minister Robert Fico

Robert Fico was shot after a cabinet meeting in the city of Handlova in western Slovakia

BRATISLAVA, May 15. /TASS/. Slovakia’s Prime Minister Robert Fico was shot and wounded in the chest, stomach and a limb in an assassination attempt.

The shots were fired when he emerged from a cabinet meeting in the city of Handlova. The shooter has been detained and identified. Here are the highlights of the incident that TASS has put together.

How it happened

- Fico was shot after a cabinet meeting in the city of Handlova in western Slovakia. Eyewitnesses told the Plus Jeden Den newspaper they heard four or five shots.

- According to the newspaper, the prime minister suffered wounds to one of his limbs, the stomach and the chest. He is in very serious condition. A helicopter ambulance rushed him to a hospital.

- Reuters reported that Fico was conscious when he arrived at the hospital, and his condition was stabilized.

- JoJ television described the shooter as a 71 years old man.

Reaction from around the world

- European politicians strongly condemned the assassination attempt on Fico. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said the incident undermines European diplomacy.

- The prime minister of neighboring Hungary, Viktor Orban, said he was shocked by the "heinous attack," while Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk expressed support to his Slovak counterpart.

- The Belarusian Foreign Ministry also strongly condemned the attack on Fico.

About Fico

- Robert Fico has been the prime minister of Slovakia since October 25, 2023. He previously held the post from 2006-2010 and 2012-2018.

- He has long criticized the West's strategy on Ukraine, saying the conflict has no military solution and arms supplies to Kiev only lead to numerous casualties on both sides.

- Fico has repeatedly noted that Slovakia will not support Ukraine's bid to join NATO because it doesn’t make sense.

- In February 2024, the Slovak prime minister said the conflict in Ukraine could have been ended at the very beginning, but someone told the Ukrainians they should not do it. Bratislava under Fico has repeatedly called for a ceasefire and peace talks.

- He sees anti-Russian sanctions as "negatively affecting the people of Slovakia."

- He also expressed the opinion that Ukraine should "significantly standardize" its relations with Russia after the end of the conflict.