Slovakian Prime Minister shot and injured outside Culture Ministry after cabinet meeting

Slovakian Prime Minister shot and injured outside Culture Ministry after cabinet meeting

The PM has been taken to hospital (Picture: Reuters)

The Slovakian Prime Minister has been injured in a shooting outside of the country’s culture ministry.

PM Robert Fico was taken to hospital, according to reports, after being shot in the town of Handlova, northeast of capital Bratislava, while greeting supporters.

A suspect has been detained, according to local news television station TA3.

He is believed to have been shot while meeting people nearby, with a reporter from saying he heard several shots before seeing the prime minister being carried away by security guards.

He was then loaded into a car and driven away in the chaotic scene.

A large cordon has been put in place around the area of the shooting and the Ministry of Culture was evacuated.

A man was seen detained on the ground (Picture: Reuters)

He was seen being rushed away in a black car (Picture: Reuters)

Other members of the government were taken to safety, and deputy speaker of parliament Lubos Blaha confirmed the incident during a session of Parliament and adjourned it until further notice.

Fico previously served as the PM of Slovakia between 2006 to 2010, and from 2012 to 2018. He’s a part of the Direction – Social Democracy party, which he founded in 1999.

Since returning to power last September, Fico formed a Eurosceptic three-party coalition which has sought close ties with the Kremlin, and has repeatedly pressured Ukraine to sign a peace treaty with Russia, causing friction amongst its allies in Nato.

In February, he told public broadcaster RTVS: ‘There has to be some kind of compromise.

‘What do they expect, that the Russians will leave Crimea, Donbas and Luhansk? That is unrealistic.’

In February, Fico shut down the country’s anti-corruption office, prompting widespread street protests and warnings from Brussels about safeguarding the rule of law.

This is a developing news story, more to follow soon… Check back shortly for further updates.

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