Slovakia marked Victory Day

Recovering Fico unexpectedly attended event at Slavín War Memorial.

Commemoration festivities of the end of WWII are traditionally held at Slavín.Commemoration festivities of the end of WWII are traditionally held at Slavín. (Source: TASR)

The commemorative event dedicated to fallen WWII soldiers on the occasion of the 71st anniversary of Victory Day held at Bratislava Slavín memorial on May 9 was unexpectedly attended by Prime Minister Robert Fico, who is recovering after heart surgery. The Government Office had not announced Fico’s participation in advance.

A speech delivered by Vice-premier for Investments Peter Pellegrini warned of extremism, chauvinism and nationalism. The duty to stand vigilant against this threat is all the more urgent today, seeing as the hatred has also managed to creep into parliament, said Pellegrini, referring to the far-right party Marian Kotleba-People’s Party Our Slovakia (ĽSNS), which won 14 MP seats.

“Spreading hatred against other people based on race or nationality and the marginalisation of or even apologising for war atrocities have made their way in recent years from the fringes of society into the programmes of political parties and even into parliament itself,” warned Pellegrini as cited by the TASR newswire. Meanwhile, shrugging and claiming that the rise of extremism is a Europe-wide phenomenon is just buck-passing, said Pellegrini.

“It seems as if the gap between us and the world’s biggest cataclysm ever has been making us less sensitive to such dangers,” said Pellegrini.

The event was also attended by Parliamentary Vice-chairman Béla Bugár (Most-Híd), several cabinet members, ambassadors, representatives of regional and local authorities, and figures from the Slovak Association of Anti-fascist Fighters (SZPB). 

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