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AP: Slovak election frontrunner vows to stop support for Ukraine

by Elsa Court September 18, 2023 11:20 AM 2 min read
Robert Fico during an interview in Bratislava, Slovakia, on April 25, 2023. (Michaela Nagyidaiova/Bloomberg via Getty Images)
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Robert Fico, a former prime minister of Slovakia and frontrunner in the country's upcoming parliamentary elections, said that he would stop support for Ukraine if he returns to power, the Associated Press reported on Sept. 17.

In an interview with the AP, Fico said  that "we won’t send any arms or ammunition to Ukraine anymore,” if his party, SMER, forms a government.

"No amount of Western weapons going to Ukraine would change the course of the war," and a "compromise peace deal" should be negotiated with Russia, he told the AP.

He claimed that it is "naive to think that Russia would ever abandon the territory it controls” in Ukraine.

Fico opposes EU sanctions against Russia and wants Slovakia, a NATO member, to block Ukraine from joining the alliance.  

He has also repeated the myth that the war in Ukraine began as a civil war, a narrative Russia used to try to conceal its involvement in Donbas.

On Aug. 30, he told a crowd of supporters that the war in Ukraine began "when the Ukrainian Nazis and fascists started to murder the Russian citizens in Donbas and Luhansk," repeating Russian propaganda.

Fico was previously the prime minister of Slovakia from 2006 to 2010. He was re-elected in 2012 but resigned in 2018 following a political crisis sparked by the murder of the investigative journalist Jan Kuciak.

Before he was killed, Kuciak had investigated corruption scandals in Fico's party and alleged ties between the Italian mafia and figures in Fico's network.

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