PM Fico: government will not ignore results of Gabčíkovo referendum

THE GOVERNMENT respects and understands the result of the recent referendum held in Gabčíkovo, Trnava region, in which locals overwhelmingly by 97 percent of votes disagreed with the planned placing of 500 immigrants seeking asylum from Austria into a local Slovak Technical University dorm, Prime Minister Robert Fico said at a press conference on Augusts 11.

Prime Minister Robert FicoPrime Minister Robert Fico(Source: Sme)

“We won’t ignore [the outcome of the referendum],” said Fico, as quoted by the TASR newswire, adding that he realises that if similar referenda were organised elsewhere in Slovakia, the results would be similar. “But I think that we can concur that we can’t say that we won’t do anything concerning the immigration crisis in Europe.”

Read also:Gabčíkovo voters oppose migrant camp

Fico further stated that the cabinet will introduce strict conditions that will ensure Slovak citizens will not be exposed to any risk relating to the placement of immigrants. He said that it needs to be waited out to see if the current agreement with Austria will actually be implimented and it will then see whether the asylum seekers will be placed in Gabčíkovo or elsewhere.

“These are issues that we are certainly talking about, but as we understand from what people in Gabčíkovo have told us, it’s the government’s duty to react in a positive way to the referendum,” said Fico, as quoted by TASR, without providing any further details.

Nevertheless, if the asylum seekers who are placed in Slovakia on a temporary basis while their asylum applications are being dealt with in Austria violate the “game rules”, they will have to leave Slovakia immediately, according to Fico.

Read also:Fico: Slovakia may admit additional asylum seekers from Austria

In more general terms, Fico criticised the EU’s overall immigration policies as wrong and stated that it should focus primarily on the origins of the crisis in northern Africa, TASR reported.

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