Diplomat pulls back curtain on Fico's opposition to aiding Ukraine

Robert Fico tells Ursula von der Leyen that his government will not provide aid to Ukraine
Robert Fico tells Ursula von der Leyen that his government will not provide aid to Ukraine

Former Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin during a Radio NV broadcast on Oct. 27 shed light on Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico's motives for refusing to aid Ukraine militarily.

"Fico has a desire, like Orban, to bargain with Brussels and the United States: to wangle additional money, additional positions," the diplomat said.

Read also: Slovak Defense Minister announces halt to arms shipments to Ukraine

“He says that there will be no military aid. To be fair, we have already taken most of what we need from Slovakia.”

The refusal to provide Ukraine with military assistance does not mean that it will not be possible to buy weapons from Slovakia, the former Ukrainian foreign minister stated.

"These are, as people say in Odesa, two big differences," he said.

Klimkin also said that Slovakia’s governing Smer party "has people with whom we can talk sensibly."

Read also: Slovak PM rejects military aid for Ukraine, advocates decade-long peace talks

"And you can talk to Fico himself, although it will not be an easy conversation," the diplomat added.

“There is always talk on the sidelines about how Fico sometimes looks back at his past and what grievances he had in his relations with Ukraine: when someone refused to meet with him. And his entourage always talks about it. So there is a lot of personal stuff there. But I think this can be mitigated, at least partially.”

The pro-Russian Smer-SD party, led by populist Robert Fico, secured victory in Slovakia’s parliamentary elections on Oct. 1, receiving 23.29% of the vote.

Read also: Slovakia the most pro-Russian EU country, says Ukrainian diplomat

Fico informed Ursula von der Leyen, the President of the European Commission, on Oct. 26 that his government would no longer provide military assistance to Ukraine.

Fico is a staunch opponent of supporting Ukraine and its aspirations to join NATO.

Fico has also been known to propagate false Russian narratives, inventing claims that the “war began in 2014 when Ukrainian nationalists and fascists started killing Russian citizens in Donbas and Luhansk.”

Fico also firmly believes that Russia, the aggressor in the conflict, “will never relinquish control of Crimea and the territories it currently holds.”

In addition, Fico criticizes sanctions against Russia, advocates for closer ties with Moscow following the conclusion of the war, and pledges to veto Ukraine’s NATO membership “if such an opportunity arises.”

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine