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Slovakia announces the end of military aid to Ukraine

Slovakia has until now been a staunch supporter of Kyiv since Russia invaded in February last year,
Slovakia has until now been a staunch supporter of Kyiv since Russia invaded in February last year, Copyright Petr David Josek/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved
Copyright Petr David Josek/Copyright 2023 The AP. All rights reserved
By Euronews with AFP
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Slovakia has until now been a staunch supporter of Kyiv since Russia invaded in February last year, donating arms and opening its borders for refugees fleeing the war.

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Slovakia's new Prime Minister, Robert Fico, announced on Thursday that he would stop delivering arms to Ukraine, limiting support for his neighbour to "humanitarian and civilian aid".

"We see aid to Ukraine solely as humanitarian and civilian aid, and we will no longer supply Ukraine with arms", Fico declared, the day after his appointment as head of a coalition government that includes a pro-Russian far-right party.

"The war in Ukraine is not ours, we have nothing to do with it", he added.

In his view, "an immediate halt to military operations is the best solution for Ukraine. The EU should move from being an arms supplier to a peacemaker".

The Kremlin immediately reacted to this announcement, playing down its importance.

"Slovakia's share of arms deliveries [to Kyiv] was indeed not that great, and that is why this will hardly affect the whole process", Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov told the press, before once again accusing the United States of fuelling the conflict by helping Ukraine.

During his statements to MEPs, Fico also announced that he would not support new sanctions against Russia "until we have analysed their impact on Slovakia".

"If such sanctions are going to harm us, as is the case with most sanctions, I see no reason to support them", he insisted.

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