Thursday Briefing

Security officers moved Prime Minister Robert Fico in a car after the shooting.Credit…Radovan Stoklasa/Reuters

Slovakia’s leader was attacked

Robert Fico, Slovakia’s prime minister, was shot five times and critically wounded yesterday, the most serious attack on a European leader in decades. Officials said the attack appeared to have been an assassination attempt and was politically motivated. The police said a suspect had been detained.

Fico was rushed to a nearby hospital and then airlifted to another hospital for emergency surgery. Hours later, the deputy prime minister, Tomas Taraba, told reporters that Fico’s life was no longer in danger and that he expected the prime minister to survive.

Videos from the scene showed the gunman shooting Fico in Banikov Square, in the center of the town of Handlova. The attacker stood with other people behind a barrier before shooting Fico at close range as he greeted them.

Who is Robert Fico? The 59-year-old politician is serving his third term. He has aligned with the Hungarian prime minister, Viktor Orban, in opposing aid to Ukraine and has strong ties to Russia’s leader, Vladimir Putin.

Currently, the Ukrainians are firing one shell for every 10 the Russians fire. Credit…Nicole Tung for The New York Times

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