NEWS IN SHORT

Police kill alleged human trafficker

FOLLOWING an exchange of fire with Slovak police, an armed man alleged to be a human trafficker from Ukraine died on August 2 near the Ukrainian border.

FOLLOWING an exchange of fire with Slovak police, an armed man alleged to be a human trafficker from Ukraine died on August 2 near the Ukrainian border.

A member of the border guard shot dead the man they said was in the act of smuggling five Vietnamese migrants between the villages of Nová Sedlica and Zboj in the district of Snina.

Interior Minister Robert Kaliňák said this particular smuggler was known to be dangerous and aggressive, and the border police had been searching for him ever since he fired shots at police officers last year. The minister said the man did not respond to police appeals and warning shots, the TASR newswire reported.

“The loss of life is something which cannot make us happy, but in this case the incident could not be avoided,” Kaliňák said, as quoted by the TA3 private broadcaster.

Slovak authorities will return all detained Vietnamese migrants back to Ukraine following the EU Return Directive.

EU legislation says that illegal immigrants should be sent back to their home country or to the country from which they travelled into the EU, according to the Pravda daily.

The current situation in Ukraine has not resulted in an increase in the number of people trafficked through the Slovak-Ukrainian border so far, but smugglers are more aggressive and better armed than before, Kaliňák said, as quoted by TASR.

“I believe that this [case] will have a preventive effect and the situation will calm down,” Kaliňák said, as quoted by the Sme daily.

He added that this incident confirms that increasing border security was a good decision.

Currently, the 40-kilometre long border is patrolled by more than 900 police officers and 500 cameras, which are substituted by thermo cameras at night. Police also use a photographic trigger system hidden in the hilly terrain, one drone with a camera and a geo-radar seeking underground tunnels, according to Pravda.

“I think that [the Slovak-Ukraine border] is the most secured one from all borders with Ukraine for sure,” Kaliňák said, as quoted by TA3. “It is not just our opinion, it is also [cited] in last year’s evaluation of the European Commission.”

Top stories

The referendum is said to protect traditional families.
Politics & society

Turnout key to referendum result

EVEN amid heated discussion about the content of a February 7 referendum targeting the constitutional definition of family, experts say the biggest test for supporters of the Alliance for Family (AZR) ballot initiative is whether turnout surpasses the required 50-percent quorum of eligible voters.

26. Jan 2015
One of the drugs to be withdrawn from pharmacies.
Business

Eleven generic drugs withdrawn from Slovak pharmacies

Slovak State Institute for Drug Control (ŠÚKL) on January 28 suspended the distribution of 11 generic drugs and withdrew them from the market.

29. Jan 2015
Krásna Hôrka Castle ablaze.
Culture & lifestyle

Reconstruction on Krásna Hôrka Castle continues

THE RECONSTRUCTION works on the Krásna Hôrka Castle, which was severely damaged by fire in 2012, continue in accordance with the plans, Judita Krajčiová of the Slovak National Museum (SNM) told the TASR newswire.

27. Jan 2015
Tom Nicholson
Opinion

Economy Minister Pavlis has to go

No one with such an obvious conflict of interest has any place in government.

30. Jan 2015