Fico Urges Mayors to Show Zero Tolerance for Fascist Displays

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Prime Minister Robert Fico, President Andrej Kiska and ZMOS chairman Michal Sykora (from left to right)

Bratislava, May 17 (TASR) – Prime Minister Robert Fico on Wednesday urged town and village mayors attending a Slovak Towns and Villages Association (ZMOS) congress in Bratislava not to countenance displays of fascism, TASR learnt on the same day.

Such manifestations must be halted while there is still time, he added.

“I’m asking you not to tolerate any fascist displays at the lowest, local level. This country is built on the values of the [1944] Slovak National Uprising. This country is built on the values of resistance to fascism, and we mustn’t tolerate the fact that there are politicians in Slovakia who are surrounded by armed patrols,” said Fico in his address to the delegates.

The halting of such practices “must be one of the key challenges faced by our country because this is beginning to spread like a brown plague,” he said.

The premier also pledged no tolerance for misuses of fundamental rights, such as the right to assembly and free speech, for the sake of anti-democratic initiatives.

“Calls to topple the Government and hold general strikes abound. Calls to bypass laws are also plentiful,” said Fico, who went on to address an appeal to all top state officials and all citizens of Slovakia. “Slovakia is a democratic country, we have democratic rules in place, and the incumbent Government emerged from a democratic general election. Only a general election can decide what government will be in power,” stressed Fico.

The premier went on to urge mayors to play their part in combating corruption. “If, during the absorption of EU funds, you encounter any display of non-transparent or corrupt behaviour from state officials, please report it at once,” he told the delegates.

Meanwhile, Fico highlighted the fact that Slovakia has among the highest rates of economic growth in the EU, along with a robust rise in household consumption and a falling unemployment rate.