BANSKA BYSTRICA: Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico’s condition was on Friday “still very serious” two days after an attempted assassination, his deputy and close ally said, as police raided the suspect’s home.

Fico was hospitalised after the shooting on Wednesday, which happened as the 59-year-old leader was speaking to members of the public after a meeting in the central town of Handlova.

“He was operated on again, he had an almost two-hour-long operation,” deputy prime minister Robert Kalinak told reporters outside the hospital in Banska Bystrica.

Fico had previously undergone a five-hour-long surgery, shortly after being airlifted from the scene of the attack on Wednesday.

“His state is still very serious. I think it would take a couple of days to see the course of the development of his state,” Kalinak added on Friday.

Earlier on Friday, local media reported that Slovak police had searched the home of the man charged with the shooting.

Officers brought along the alleged gunman, who was wearing a bulletproof vest and helmet, to the apartment he shared with his wife in the western town of Levice, Markiza TV footage showed.

Police, who told AFP they would not comment on an ongoing investigation, have not named the suspect, but media have identified him as 71-year-old writer Juraj Cintula.

“This is a lone wolf whose actions were accelerated after the presidential election since he was dissatisfied with its outcome,” Inte­rior Minister Matus Sutaj Estok said.

Published in Dawn, May 18th, 2024

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