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Assassination Attempt on Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico: Suspect Identified

POLITICSAssassination Attempt on Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico: Suspect Identified

71-year-old Juraj C. from the city of Levice is allegedly behind the assassination attempt on the life of Prime Minister Robert Fico, according to Slovak media. Reports indicate that the man had a permit for a firearm. Witnesses claim he called out to the Slovak head of government before firing several shots in his direction. Russian propaganda media assert that Juraj C. is a writer and political activist.

Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico was shot after an off-site government meeting in the town of Handlova. The shots were fired in front of the local House of Culture, where the government session was held. According to the official profile of the politician, he is in a “life-threatening condition.” It is still unclear how many shots were fired at the Slovak politician.

According to witnesses interviewed by the Slovak daily “Pravda,” the assailant called out to the Slovak prime minister, shook his hand, and suddenly pulled out a gun. “He shouted at him to come closer, lured him in, and then pulled out a gun,” one witness told the newspaper. Another said they heard “four quick shots.” “I don’t know the shooter. I don’t think he was from Handlova because everyone here knows each other. I noticed him. First, he was walking, then he stood and just waited,” said a woman who was among the small crowd of about 50 people waiting for the prime minister to leave the building after the government session.

Journalists from Slovak TV JOJ report that the suspect in the attack is 71-year-old Juraj C. from the city of Levice. According to the newspaper “Dennik N,” the assailant was born in 1953 and is a writer. He was a member of the Slovak Writers’ Association. The news service aktuality.sk reported that the attacker possessed a registered firearm for which he had a permit. Journalists claim to have contacted the attacker’s son, who confirmed these reports.

“I have no idea what my father had in mind, what he planned, and why it happened,” the man told aktuality.sk. Asked if Juraj C. was negatively inclined towards the Slovak prime minister, he said, “I’ll say this – he didn’t vote for him. That’s all I can say on the matter.” He denied that his father ever openly mentioned an attack on the politician and also denied that the 71-year-old had ever been treated psychiatrically. “Maybe there was some kind of breakdown, I don’t know,” he said. The Slovak news service claims the perpetrator was involved in “artistic activities.” He is said to have published several volumes of poetry, and in 2016 he worked for a private security company. At that time, he reportedly fell victim to an attack in a shopping center in Levice. “Early in the evening, a younger man, under the influence of drugs, is said to have entered the store and attacked C.,” journalists reported.

Reports about the suspected assailant also appear in Russian propaganda media. The social media channel Czeka OGPU, which is linked to Russian services, also states that the attacker is a writer and claims that C. is a “liberal party activist.”

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