Slovak PM Fico Resigns, Deputy Takes Over

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BRATISLAVA – Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico resigned from his post on Thursday after two weeks of crisis following the murder of an investigative reporter and his girlfriend last month, China’s Xinhua news agency reported.

Fico handed over his resignation letter to President Andrej Kiska, said the local news agency.

The coalition government led by Fico’s Social Democratic Party (Smer-SD) also resigned but the ministers keep their posts until a new cabinet is appointed.

Fico,53, will remain as the chairman of Smer SD.

President Kiska has tasked Deputy Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini with forming a new government.

Earlier, Pellegrini presented President Kiska with the signatures of 79 members of parliament (MPs) in support of the new government.

Investigative reporter Jan Kuciak and his girlfriend Martina Kusnirova,both 27, were found shot dead in his house in western Slovakia on Feb 26.

Kuciak was said to be working on fraud cases involving businessmen with political ties.

The murders prompted two ministers to resign. Minister of Culture Marek Madaric resigned on Feb 28 while Minister of Interior Robert Kalinak resigned a week later. -BERNAMA

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