Another EU leader tests positive for COVID-19 after attending same summit as Emmanuel Macron

Both Slovakian Prime Minister Igor Matovic (left) and French President Emmanuel Macron (right) have tested positive after attending the same EU summit last week
Both Slovakian Prime Minister Igor Matovic (left) and French President Emmanuel Macron (right) have tested positive after attending the same EU summit last week Copyright AP
Copyright AP
By Rachael Kennedy
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Slovakian Prime Minister Igor Matovic is urging people to be "extremely careful" after testing positive for coronavirus.


Another EU leader has tested positive for coronavirus after attending a summit in Brussels last week.

Slovakian Prime Minister Igor Matovic confirmed his COVID-19 diagnosis on Friday - a day after French President Emmanuel Macron also revealed he had contracted the disease.

"I'm one of you today," Matovic wrote in a Facebook post as he described the "tension and fear" he felt while awaiting a text message with his test result.

"Please be extra careful. I know that looking at a stranger as a number in line is a comfortable and popular thing with many people nowadays.

"But people are not numbers and no grandma or grandpa deserves our selfishness. No chronically ill person deserves to be despised and considered inferior in their life, just because we are supposedly ′free'. No, we are not!"

Matovic was originally planning to spend Christmas volunteering at a hospital, but admitted this was looking "a little different now" as he apologised for being "[an elephant in a china shop] making mistakes".

Oddnes som jedným z Vás. Z Vás, o ktorých som každé ráno s napätím a strachom čakal správu v mojom mobile ešte predtým,...

Posted by Igor Matovic on Friday, December 18, 2020
Igor Matovic revealed his positive result in a Facebook post

The 47-year-old's announcement comes a little over 24 hours after the Elysée Palace also confirmed Macron's diagnosis.

On Friday, officials said the French president had developed a cough, fever and fatigue, and was self-isolating at the La Lanterne residence in Versailles.

They declined to comment on any treatment he would be receiving.

Francois Mori/AP
Emmanuel Macron (left) and Antonio Costa (right) had lunch together on WednesdayFrancois Mori/AP

While Macron has had several recent meetings in Paris, France's health minister has suggested that he may have actually caught COVID-19 at an EU summit in Brussels last week - the same summit attended by Matovic.

It is not yet clear who else - if any - at the event was in close contact with Matovic, although back home, Slovakian media has reported several ministers are now quarantining.

Meanwhile, European Council President Charles Michel, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa are all in isolation after meeting with Macron this week.

Belgium Prime Minister Alexander De Croo and Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel are also in quarantine awaiting a test result after the EU summit, while European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen is not planning to isolate after testing negative.

Which European leaders have had COVID-19?

  • Nikol Pashinyan, prime minister of Armenia

  • Alexander Lukashenko, president of Belarus

  • Boyko Borissov, prime minister of Bulgaria

  • Andrej Plenković, prime minister of Croatia

  • Emmanuel Macron, president of France

  • Albert II, prince of Monaco

  • Andrzej Duda, president of Poland

  • Igor Matovic, prime minister of Slovakia

  • Boris Johnson, prime minister of the UK

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