Attempted Assassination of Slovakia’s PM Could Lead to WWIII

naszalyg93 /
naszalyg93 /

Slovakia’s Prime Minister Robert Fico was shot multiple times following a government meeting in the town of Handlová, in central Slovakia. He reportedly sustained injuries to his chest, back, neck, and head; his security detail rushed him to a nearby car. Taken almost immediately to a nearby helicopter and rushed to a hospital for treatment, he was clinging to life.

According to his official Facebook page, the PM was flown to Banská Bystrica. He needed urgent treatment, and his team claimed that bringing him to Bratislava would be too risky, given his injuries. With conflicting reports from the Slovak media, it’s hard to determine exactly how many times he was shot. However, one consistent message is that the shooter was captured by his security team and immediately taken into custody.

Most recently winning the general election in September, the populist prime minister has made multiple decisions that have been very controversial with their citizens. Given Slovakia’s location in central Europe, his polarizing politics and pro-Russian stance have left many in the country weary of his leadership capabilities. He made a push earlier this month to make the media fall in lockstep with the government’s agenda, and he wants to take the media in Slovakia under government control.

Despite many people not being in favor of Fico, Slovak President Zuzana Čaputová, as well as opposition leader Michal Šimečka, condemned the shooting. The country’s leadership has posted messages of support for Fico and showed shock at the attack; they and many others were appalled that someone would shoot Fico down in the streets. Meanwhile, global leaders, including President Joe Biden and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, condemned the attacks and sent thoughts and prayers his way.