New Police Unit to Fight against Terrorism and Extremism

Prime Minister Robert Fico introducing a police unit to fight against terrorism and extremism (Photo by TASR)

Bratislava, February 1 (TASR) – Slovakia has underestimated the new wave of fascism and extremism; discussions on social networks have no rules and responsibilities, and often contain information incompatible with the nature of this state, stated Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-SD) at a press conference on Wednesday.

“Responding to these issues with words isn’t enough, punishments are needed,” said the premier as he was introducing a specialised group of police officers entitled the National Unit for Fighting Terrorism and Extremism. The unit, which has started operating as of Wednesday, comes under the National Crime Agency (NAKA) and includes more than 100 police representatives. It’s set to deal with crimes of terrorism and extremism and crimes related to their funding.

Interior Minister Robert Kalinak (Smer-SD) described the newly established group as an elite unit of the Police Corps and promised that the state will create suitable conditions for them so that they can work without being disturbed. Kalinak hopes that the unit will soon see outstanding results.

According to Police Corps president Tibor Gaspar, the setting up of the aforementioned unit has been a response to social demand. Gaspar wants to create the material and personnel conditions for the members of the unit. He also called on the Prosecutor General’s Office to begin combating terrorism and extremism together with the unit.

Fico further stated that extremism has to be rejected in principle. Denying the Holocaust or “glorifying people who recognise fascists” has nothing to do with a democratic state, added the prime minister.

Justice Minister Lucia Zitnanska (Most-Hid) has welcomed the special unit’s establishment as well. “It’s a specific type of crime that requires it be dealt with by those who specialise in it,” said Zitnanska after the Cabinet session, noting that the issue of extremism is already being addressed by the Specialised Criminal Court and the Special Prosecutor’s Office.