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UPDATED: Harabin won't vacate chair easily; he gets a rival SUPREME Court President Štefan Harabin is not ready to part from his job despite an earlier statement by Prime Minister Robert Fico that he would not recommend re-electing Harabin, whose five-year term ends in June. The Judicial Council, the top judicial body chaired by Harabin himself, proposed him as a candidate for the race on April 15, spurring critics to call on the justice minister to propose another strong candidate to face the incumbent president in the race. 22 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Smer nominee is alleged Scientologist News in short Locked WHEN Prime Minister Robert Fico spoke about Scientologists before the run-off of the presidential elections as a sect that represents an extraordinary security risk for Slovakia, he allegedly forgot about nominees of his own party, the Sme daily wrote in its April 12 issue, referring to Martin Wiedermann, general director of the Central Securities Depository (CDCP) and chair of its board of directors. Wiedermann also owns the company Shift, which owns several internet domains connected to Scientology, Sme wrote. Scientology became a buzzword in the presidential election campaign.Smer has refused to comment on the issue. The National Property Fund (FNM), which owns the majority share of the CDCP, said it knew about the connection. 21 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Constitutional amendment stuck News in short Locked THE RULING Smer party and the opposition Christian Democratic Movement (KDH), which have teamed up for a joint constitutional amendment which would introduce several major changes to the justice system and simultaneously define marriage as a bond between a man and a woman, have slowed in their efforts to pass their draft. 21 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Kaliňák defends shooting Video missing after police targeted innocent students on highway Locked POLICE officers regularly shoot at civilians, said Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák when explaining the disputed police operation from June 2013, in which police were firing shots at a car on the D2 highway with four innocent students. 21 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Quality of democracy down in 2014 Locked THE QUALITY of democracy in Slovakia has deteriorated, according to the results of the IVO Barometer that evaluates the quality of democracy in several areas. 21 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Kotleba's monthly defunded Council breaks veto on the regional budget Locked JUST months after his inauguration, Banská Bystrica Regional Governor Marian Kotleba is embroiled in conflict with the regional council. The councillors’ anger over the regional monthly newspaper, which recently began echoing Kotleba’s praise of the wartime fascist Slovak state, resulted in their unanimous decision to grant the paper “one big zero” from the regional budget, as one of the councillors put it. 21 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Harabin won't vacate chair easily SUPREME Court President Štefan Harabin is not ready to part from his job despite an earlier statement by Prime Minister Robert Fico that he would not recommend re-electing Harabin, whose five-year term ends in June. 21 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Policies targeting violence against women lacking WOMEN that are the targets of violence in Slovakia often remain silent and hide their pain under the pretext of social conventions that lead them to expect a lack of sensitivity from relatives or police. In Slovakia every fifth woman has personally experienced violence, a fact linked to gender prejudices and women’s economic dependence on men. 17 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Russians banned from celebration News in short REPRESENTATIVES of Liptovský Mikuláš, Žilina Region, have rejected the request from the Russian Embassy to Slovakia to have a Russian military attaché attend celebrations commemorating the 69th anniversary of the town’s liberation from Nazi Germany. The decision came in response to the situation in Crimea, the TASR newswire reported on April 3. 14 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Maďarič leaves deputy chair post News in short CULTURE Minister Marek Maďarič will resign from the post of Smer’s deputy chairman at the party’s next session, but he will keep his ministerial post. The decision came in response to the presidential elections, which saw Prime Minister Robert Fico lose to philanthropist Andrej Kiska. Maďarič headed Fico’s campaign. Other Smer members, however, say that he may return to the leadership position. 14 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Most-Híd adopts new agenda Party should not forget its Hungarian voters, analyst says THE FIRST-EVER political party to be founded on the ambition to bridge the gap between the majority population and minorities living in Slovakia is shifting its focus. After five years of existence, Most-Híd is rebranding itself from a party of cooperation to a civic party. 14 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Slovakia marks 10 years in NATO Anniversary comes as Russian incursion into Ukraine casts security in new light THE 10th anniversary of Slovakia’s NATO membership has come as the military alliance considers future strategy in the wake of Russia’s invasion of the Crimean peninsula. Now a stable member of this 28-member club, for Slovakia this was not always a given. 14 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Regional paper praises fascist state THE FLAG of the European Union is a symbol of occupation, and the Nazi-allied wartime Slovak state was a prosperous and successful country: these are just the two most striking examples of the kind of rhetoric found in a newspaper published by the Banská Bystrica regional government since Marian Kotleba became governor. 14 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Jail time for Košice councillor KOŠICE city councillor František Olejník, a former deputy of Smer convicted of taking a bribe for influencing voting, will now officially spend the next few years in prison after his last hope of a reprieve evaporated on April 7. 14 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
Malinová case goes to court HEDVIGA Žáková, whose case has dragged on for nearly eight years and has become synonymous with an individual caught up in the state machinery, now finds herself in court for perjury – a result receiving condemnation from human rights groups. 14 Apr 2014 The Slovak Spectator
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Quote of the Week
“We discussed it with them, they changed their minds and returned back.” Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák commenting on how Slovakia dealt with the first four Ukrainians who applied for asylum.