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Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico ‘approaches positive prognosis’

Slovakia’s Deputy Prime Minister said the Prime Minister is gradually moving towards a “positive prognosis” after undergoing further surgery.

Robert Fico, 59, was seriously injured after being shot in the small town of Handlova on Wednesday.

He is currently in serious but stable condition. Officials said it was unlikely he would be transferred back to Bratislava in the next few days.

Meanwhile, the man charged with attempted murder appeared in court.

According to a court spokesman, the court ruled that he will be detained until trial.

The alleged attacker has not been officially named, but Slovak reports have widely identified him as Juraj Cintula, 71, from the town of Levice.

Pravda newspaper described Mr. Cintula as a poet, while Sme newspaper reported that he was involved in various political organizations with a variety of ideologies.

Deputy Prime Minister Robert Kalinak said Saturday that the various medical procedures Mr. Fico underwent were “starting to bear fruit” and that there was no need to officially assume his official duties.

He said “several miracles” happened at the hospital where the Prime Minister was being treated thanks to the efforts of medical staff.

“I cannot find words to be grateful for the fact that we are gradually approaching that positive prognosis,” he added.

However, Mr. Kalinak said the prime minister’s condition was still “really serious.”

“Certainly, it does not allow us to make such a transfer in the near future – that is, at the weekend.”

Mr Fico was shot four times in the stomach and arm at close range as he greeted supporters, and his injuries were said to be extensive and complex.

He is said to have undergone several surgeries, including the latest one to remove dead tissue.

Interior Minister Matus Sutaj Estok said on Thursday that the suspect in Mr. Fico’s shooting acted alone and had previously participated in anti-government protests.

The attack has left Slovakia tense and deeply polarized. Deputy Prime Minister Robert Kalinak called on the country to follow the path of tolerance and accused the opposition and the media of inciting hatred.

Mr. Fico returned to power in Slovakia after elections last September, as head of a populist-nationalist coalition.

The political climate in the country has since become particularly hostile – although the split dates back to at least 2018, when a journalist investigating allegations of high-level corruption has been murdered.

Mr. Fico was later forced to resign in the face of mass protests.

His re-election is a major comeback achieved on a platform that included promises to end military aid to Kyiv and veto Ukraine’s NATO ambitions, as well as other talk that suggested remember Moscow more than Brussels.


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