Robert Fico

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Robert Fico is a Slovak populist politician with pro-Russian, anti-Ukraine, and anti-NATO views. Fico uses Russian propaganda narratives in his speeches. As a Prime Minister, he met with Russian dictator Vladimir Putin to strengthen bilateral cooperation. Robert Fico dubbed Ukrainians “fascists” and called on NATO to stop providing weapons to the “Kyiv regime”, using Kremlin-style terminology. Fico has compared a NATO battlegroup in Slovakia to Nazi soldiers and portrayed Russia’s war against Ukraine as a confrontation between the US and Russia.

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Ending On: 24.02.2025 10:18

Timezone: Europe/Brussels

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Fico joined the Czechoslovakian Communist Party in 1986 after applying in 1984. Later, he joined the Party of the Democratic Left (SD), a successor to the Communist Party of Slovakia, following the Velvet Revolution of 1989 and the collapse of the communist state in Czechoslovakia.

Fico served two prior mandates from 2006 to 2010 and 2012 to 2018, both marred by allegations of corruption and concerns of authoritarianism. After Fico lost the 2020 election, his party broke up, and many believed his political career was over. But he has since pulled off a comeback to the Slovak political stage.

In 2018, he had to resign due to the murder of an investigative journalist and his fiance, but now he is trying to return to the big political game as a part of the Smer SD party. 

As Prime Minister from 2006 to 2010, then again from 2012 to 2018, he raged against the West for his domestic audience while remaining cautious of upsetting the international status quo.

Fico accused Georgia of provocation when it attacked South Ossetia during the 2008 Russia-Georgia war. During his term as Prime Minister, the Slovak Foreign Ministry condemned the Crimean referendum that incorporated Crimea into Russia. 

In response to the Euromaidan uprisings in Ukraine in 2013, Fico claimed that the “EU is no religious obligation” and that the EU is “so in love with itself” that it believes there is no other alternative in the world. He later denounced the use of violence but said that the protests were an internal Ukrainian matter.

Concerning the EU sanctions imposed on Russia in 2014, Fico called them “senseless” and a “threat to the Slovak economy.” 

In a November 2016 statement on Brexit, he remarked that it was unclear what the United Kingdom desired, adding that it “must suffer” more than the 27 countries that will stay in the bloc.

In 2016, Fico stated that the sanctions had not affected Russian policies. “Sanctions harm the EU and Russia while benefiting the US.” “I reject them, but I will not break the EU’s unity over it,” he said.

Fico was forced out of office five years ago after the murder of a journalist investigating his finances. He sees a resurgence that mirrors a populist revival in several European countries.

Businessmen, former officials, and politicians linked to Fico were accused of corruption in Slovakia. The most recent high-profile incident happened in 2018 when journalist Jan Kuciak and his fiancée were assassinated when he looked into how the Italian mafia and corrupt corporate organizations connected to Fico’s Smer party.

Fico was highly critical of the Von der Leyen Commission and her foreign and military policy in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022 and 2023. He also raised disputes with the Commission on immigration issues.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, he was particularly critical of European sanctions against Russia, alleging that the sanctions harmed the Russian people rather than the Kremlin and that Europeans bore the tolls.

Fico blamed Ukraine and the West for initiating the war when Russia launched a full-fledged invasion of Ukraine, even though Russian troops violated international law by invading a sovereign nation. Simultaneously, Ukraine has been subjected to an unjust, unprovoked, and relentless war undertaken by Putin’s dictatorship.

Fico invited Russian diplomat Igor Bratchikov to speak on the stage on August 29, 2022, during the anniversary of the Slovak National Uprising. Even though Russia has placed Slovakia on its blacklist of countries following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, this was done.

Former Prime Minister Robert Fico showers praise on Moscow and compares himself to Viktor Orbán.

As part of his election campaign, the Smer party leader, Robert Fico, dubbed Ukrainians “fascists” and called on NATO to stop providing weapons to the “Kyiv regime” – these narratives you often hear on Russian propaganda TV outlets.

In a meeting with Fico, U.S. Ambassador Gautam Rana said he urged the opposition leader not to ally with Russian President Vladimir Putin, suggesting that doing so would appease Adolf Hitler.

Fico has compared a NATO battlegroup in Slovakia to Nazi soldiers and portrayed the Ukrainian situation as a confrontation between the US and Russia. He claimed that allowing Ukraine to join NATO would result in World War III.

In imitation of Orbán, he spent his time in opposition leaning farther to the right, decrying “Ukrainian fascists” and wailing against the Slovak government’s intention to ship whatever weaponry it had to Ukraine. He then referred to Aputová as an “American agent,” echoing Donald Trump’s description of recent arrests of key intelligence officials as a “police-led coup.”

The Smer party leader focuses his campaign on language hostile to the West and Ukraine and beneficial to Moscow. Robert Fico accused Western allies of “supporting murder” in Ukraine. He vowed to stop EU sanctions against Russia and opposed military assistance for Ukraine.

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Auction started 01.09.2023 14:10

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