No longer in life-threatening condition

Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico walks during the European Council summit at EU headquarters in Brussels, April 18, 2024.

Kenzo Tribouillard | Episode | Getty Images

Slovakia's populist Prime Minister Robert Fico is expected to survive an assassination attempt with multiple shots after surgery, according to the country's deputy prime minister.

“Luckily, as far as I know, the surgery went well and I think he will ultimately survive.” Tomas Taraba told BBC Newshour. “Right now, the state of the operation should be such that he is not in a life-threatening situation.”

The Slovak prime minister's condition has stabilized but remains serious, Reuters told a hospital official on Thursday.

No other official update on Fico's condition has been distributed. CNBC has contacted the Slovak Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Fico, 59, was seriously injured on Wednesday after being shot several times following a political event in the Slovak city of Handlova. He was transported by helicopter to a nearby hospital in Banska Bystrica for emergency treatment. according to his official Facebook page.

“This was a politically motivated attempt and took place shortly after the presidential elections,” Slovak Interior Minister Matúš Šutaj Eštok said at a press conference. translated video footage from Sky News.

A suspect has been arrested, Slovak President Zuzana Caputova said on Wednesday in a social media update.

“The shooting of the prime minister is first and foremost an attack on a human being – but it is also an attack on democracy,” she said in an officially translated video. “Police have arrested the perpetrator and will provide further information if possible.”

Fico served as Prime Minister of Slovakia for about ten years, over three terms, and headed the Smer (Richting) party. He last held the post after parliamentary elections in 2023 and pledged in October to end military aid to Ukraine and no longer support further sanctions against Russia. Reuters reported this.

His government has also proposed a controversial overhaul and state takeover of public broadcaster RTVS, and a highly controversial amendment to the country's criminal code that would, among other things, abolish the special prosecutor's office that oversees serious crimes.

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