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Slovak PM Fico Releases First Public Statement Since Assassination Attempt

State of the Union: The Slovakian prime minister blames the “hatred” of the opposition.
Newspaper on Fico assassination attempt
Credit: Zuzana Gogova/Getty Images

For the first time since he was wounded in an assassination attempt in mid-May, Slovakia’s Prime Minister Robert Fico has released a public statement in the form of a video address.

In the speech, Fico addressed the subject of his assailant, who was allegedly motivated by Fico’s opposition to Ukraine aid. Fico said that he forgives his would-be assassin, and “will not take any active legal action against him or seek damage compensation.” Fico added that he wanted the assailant to “sort out what he did and why in his own head.”

Fico laid the blame solely at the feet of Slovakia’s opposition, stating that the would-be-assassin was “merely a messenger of the evil and political hatred that a politically unsuccessful and frustrated opposition has developed into unmanageable proportions in Slovakia.”

The sole poll released since the assassination attempt shows Fico’s social-democratic Smer party leading with 24.4 percent. This would be an increase from the 22.95 percent they received in the 2023 parliamentary elections, which returned Fico to power. It also represents an improvement in the polling for Fico himself, who was earlier polling between 21 and 22 percent.

Slovakia will have elections to the European Parliament on June 8, and Fico’s party appears poised to gain four seats of 15, an improvement of one on its 2019 results.