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Slovaks demand proper investigation in slain reporter case

March 5, 2018
Associated Press

BRATISLAVA, Slovakia (AP) — Slovak protesters were planning to take to the streets again Monday to demand a thorough investigation into the slayings of an investigative journalist and his fiancee as well as changes in government.

More than a week after the bodies of 27-year-old Jan Kuciak and Martina Kusnirova were found in their house, President Andrej Kiska says Slovakia faces a "serious political crisis" due to a drop in public trust in the state.

In his last unfinished story, Kuciak reported on the influence of the Italian mafia in Slovakia and its ties to people close to Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico.

After tens of thousands of protesters marched on Friday to honor Kuciak, more demonstrations — this time directly aimed at the government — are planned this week, including a rally in Bratislava scheduled for Friday.

In a statement posted on Facebook, the organizers called on foreign experts to join the local investigative team and for the creation of "a new trustworthy government with no people who are suspected of corruption" or ties to organized crime.

The first anti-government rally was planned for Monday evening in the second largest city of Kosice.

A junior party in the coalition government led by Fico is supporting calls by the opposition for Interior Minister Robert Kalinak to resign.

The leadership of the party known as Most-Hid will meet next week to discuss the coalition's future.

Kalinak is a key ally of Fico in their leftist Smer-Social Democracy party. Thousands rallied across Slovakia already last year to demand Kalinak's resignation due to a corruption scandal.

President Kiska called Sunday for substantial changes in the country's coalition government or for an early election.

Fico rejected his proposals.



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