Pro-Russia party wins Slovakia election, intends to end support of Ukraine

Former Slovakia prime minister and chairman of the Smer-SD party Robert Fico talks to reporters after parliamentary elections at the party's headquarters in Bratislava, Slovakia, on Sunday. Fico's party won the parliamentary elections with almost 23% of the vote. Photo by Martin Divisek/EPA-EFE

Oct. 1 (UPI) -- The pro-Russia Smer-SSD party won the largest share of seats in Slovakia's parliament during weekend voting, vowing to cut off the country's support for Ukraine.

Smer-SSD, led by former Prime Minister Robert Fico, led all other parties with 22.9% of the vote, official media reported. However it will need to form a coalition with other parties to form a government.

The Hlas-SD party, led by Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini, finished in third place with about 14% while the Slovak National Party won 5.7% of the vote. Those three parties together will hold 81 seats in the 150-seat parliament, good for a six-seat majority should they agree to form a ruling coalition.

The pro-European Progesivne slovensko, or PS, led by Michal Simecka, finished in second place with 18% of the vote.

Fico recently told reporters that his party would completely end support of Ukraine against the invasion of Russia. Slovakia has supplied surface-to-air missiles, helicopters and fighter jets to Ukraine.

"If Smer enters government, we will not send a single round of ammunition to Ukraine," Fico said, according to the BBC.

Fico resigned as prime minister in 2018 following the murder of a journalist who was reporting on potential links between organized crime and government officials. He was among several Slovak politicians that 27-year-old Jan Kuciak named in his reporting. His fiancée, Martina Kušnírová, was also killed.

Fico was congratulated by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.

"Guess who's back! Congratulations to Robert Fico on his undisputable victory at the Slovak parliamentary elections," Orban wrote. "Always good to work together with a patriot. Looking forward to it!"