Slovak Prime Minister Robert Figo is in stable but critical condition after the shooting, doctors said

  • Malu Curcino & Sarah Rainsford, in Bratislava
  • BBC News

video title, Slovak prime minister fighting for life after shooting

Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Figo, who was shot multiple times on Wednesday, is stable but in intensive care, doctors said.

Deputy Prime Minister Robert Kalinak said Mr Figo’s injuries were “complicated”.

Earlier Mr Figo, 59, was said to be fighting for his life after being seriously injured in the attack in the small town of Handlova.

A suspect was arrested at the scene of the shooting.

“During the night the doctors were able to confirm the patient’s condition,” said Mr Kalinak, who is also the defense minister, adding: “Unfortunately the situation is very bad as the injuries are complicated.”

Earlier, another deputy prime minister, Tomas Taraba, told the BBC that Mr Figo’s operation had gone “well” and that “I think he will survive in the end”.

Interior Minister Matus Sudaj Estoka described it as a politically motivated assassination attempt.

Mr Figo has been a divisive figure at home – and controversial in the EU – for his calls for military aid to Ukraine and an end to economic sanctions on Russia.

But the shooting has drawn condemnation from far and wide and has been described as an attack on democracy.

The gunman fired at close range

The gunman was among a small crowd of Figo supporters gathered outside a cultural center in Handlova where the prime minister was holding a meeting.

The shooting took Mr Figo’s security officials completely by surprise. After the prime minister is shot, footage shows several officers carrying him away as they bundle him into a car and drive him away from the scene.

video title, The moment the shooting of the Slovak Prime Minister begins

The gunman fired five shots at close range, hitting Mr Figo in the stomach and arm.

Following the shooting, he was taken to hospital and “fought for his life” in several hours of surgery, Defense Minister Robert Kalinak said.

There has been no official update on the prime minister’s health since then, but his second-in-command told the BBC’s Newshour program Mr Figo was “not”. [a] A life-threatening situation at this time.”

“As far as I know, the operation went well and I think he will survive in the end,” Mr Daraba said.

Mr Taraba added that the prime minister had been shot “at very close range”, with “one bullet going through the stomach and the second hitting a joint”.

Police have not yet identified the alleged suspect. He is a 71-year-old writer and political activist, according to unconfirmed local media reports.

A video showing the suspect has been widely circulated in Slovak media.

In the footage, the man says he disagrees with government policy and its stance on state media. The BBC does not know whether the person in the video was detained at the scene or under what circumstances it was filmed.

The shooting came on the day parliament began debating the government’s proposal to abolish Slovakia’s public broadcaster RTVS.

Thousands of Slovaks have protested against the public broadcaster’s proposed reform in recent weeks. However, a planned protest led by opposition parties was called off on Wednesday after news of the firing broke.

image source, Good pictures

image caption, Slovakia’s prime minister was airlifted to a hospital in Banska Bystrica and underwent several hours of surgery.

In an interview with the BBC, Deputy Prime Minister Taraba blamed the shooting on “false narratives” by opposition parties in Slovakia.

“Our prime minister has mentioned several times in the past that he was afraid this would happen,” Mr Taraba told the BBC’s World Tonight program in another interview.

According to him, Mr Figo had warned that “the way the government has been bombarded with false narratives will overheat the public reaction and lead to something like this”.

Parliament was sitting during the attack and Slovak media shouted accusations that Mr Fico’s party colleague had attacked opposition MPs.

Home Minister Mr Estok accused the media of contributing to the climate that led to the shooting of the 59-year-old, telling a news conference: “Many of you are the ones who have sown this hatred.”

Mr Estok added that he believed in the massacre [attempt] politically motivated”.

Responding to news of the attack, Slovakia’s outgoing president, Zuzana Caputova, said “a very serious incident has taken place, and we still cannot feel it”.

“The hateful rhetoric we see in society leads to hateful actions,” he added.

Slovakia’s State Security Council is due to convene and the government will also meet Thursday morning following the assassination attempt.

See also  France fire: 9 killed in fire at holiday home for disabled people

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *