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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Assassination attack on the Prime Minister of Slovakia. The services are checking the new version. The attacker may not have been a “lone wolf”

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Slovak services are considering the version that the suspect in the attack on Prime Minister Robert Fico was not a “lone wolf”, as previously believed, said Interior Minister Matusz Szutaj Esztok at a press conference on Sunday. He said that all security-related institutions in the country are working at full capacity. The head of Slovak intelligence said on Sunday that it cannot be ruled out that Slovakia “has become fertile ground for the activities of foreign services.”

On Sunday on Slovakia An extraordinary press conference was held by the Ministers of Interior and Defense, Matusz Szutaj Esztok and Robert Kaliniak, with the participation of the heads of the Slovak services.

The ministers said that the police are currently checking a new investigative version in connection with the attack on Prime Minister Robert Fico. Investigators concluded that the attacker may not have been a “lone wolf” as originally believed. According to representatives of the security services, this is evidenced by the deletion of all accounts in the attacker's social networks after the attack. He couldn't do it himself and his wife couldn't do it, said the head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. It was also noted that the attacker was supposed to talk about his plans among his circle of friends.

This means that “the crime could have been committed by a certain group of people,” Esztok said.

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Juraj Cintula and his connections with a pro-Russian paramilitary organization. “He was the most important speaker there”Wojciech Bojanowski/Fakty TVN

The condition of the Prime Minister of Slovakia. “We're all a little calmer.”

Earlier on Sunday, the head of the Ministry of National Defense and Deputy Prime Minister Robert Kalinak said that Robert Fico's life was no longer in immediate danger, although his condition was still too serious to be transported from the hospital in Banská Bystrica to the facility in Bratislava.

– The worst that we feared has not happened, at least for now – Kalinak said at a press conference in front of the hospital where the Slovak Prime Minister is currently staying. “We're all a little calmer,” he added.

READ MORE: New reports on the health condition of the Prime Minister of Slovakia

Extraordinary conference of the heads of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ministry of National Defense and the Slovak servicesPAP/EPA/JAKUB GAVLAK

Head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs: the services are working at full capacity

At Sunday's press conference, the Minister of Interior said that all security-related institutions are working at full capacity. High-risk people and groups are monitored.

Both officials and politicians who have received threats in recent days are protected, said the head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. He assured that the services would not stand by and watch hate speech on social media.

The minister informed that shopping centers and places where many people stay are being monitored, and hospitals are being protected. Offices, administrative buildings and editorial offices of newspapers and television stations are also monitored.

Chief of the Slovak Police Lubomir Solak, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense of Slovakia Robert Kalinak and the Slovak Information Service (SIS) Pavol Gaszpar at a press conference on SundayPAP/EPA/JAKUB GAVLAK

Head of Slovak intelligence: the security situation is serious

The head of the intelligence agency, the Slovak Information Service (SIS), Pavol Gaszpar, said on Sunday that it cannot be ruled out that Slovakia “has become a fertile ground for the activities of foreign services.”

In his opinion, the security situation is serious and is not helped by the attention from foreign media. Slovakia is in the spotlight, Gaszpar noted. He pointed out that the attack at Charles University in Prague in December 2023, which killed 14 people, also inspired copycats in Slovakia.

He said that such an attack was prepared, but it was eliminated. Gaszpar claims that attacks on hospitals were also being prepared. According to him, it cannot be ruled out that the attacker who attacked Prime Minister Robert Fico was inspired by someone.

Police officers in front of the court in Pezinok, where Juraj Cintula was interrogatedPAP/EPA/JAKUB GAVLAK

The next meeting of the State Security Council

MP Tibor Gaszpar (privately the father of the head of SIS), who chairs the parliamentary committee on defense and security, announced that a meeting on the security situation will be held next week. “I can only imagine that a more serious situation would be a war or a massive terrorist attack,” he said.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Robert Kaliniak announced that the next meeting of the State Security Council will be held on Wednesday. Its members are to discuss possible legislative changes to increase the protection of individuals and institutions. Kaliniak said that one solution would be to tighten penalties for verbal attacks with a high degree of hatred.

Main photo source: PAP/EPA/JAKUB GAVLAK



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