Anti-migrant Slovak PM loses majority

Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico votes in Bratislava, 5 MarchImage copyright

Image caption

Mr Fico cast his vote in the capital Bratislava

Slovakia’s leftist-nationalist Prime Minister Robert Fico has won the general election but lost his parliamentary majority, almost complete results show.

Mr Fico will now need to find coalition partners to return for a third term.

Gains by small parties, including an extreme right one, may produce a divided parliament with no clear path to forming a majority government.

Mr Fico has vowed not to accept “one single Muslim” migrant.

His country takes over the EU’s rotating presidency in July. His hardline views on migration echo those of Polish, Czech and Hungarian leaders.

  • Robert Fico’s anti-migrant rhetoric

In all, eight parties, including the far-right People’s Party – Our Slovakia led by Marian Kotleba, will be represented in parliament. Our Slovakia won more than 8% of the vote.

The BBC’s Rob Cameron in Bratislava says Mr Kotleba is an unrepentant admirer of Slovakia’s wartime existence as a Nazi puppet state, and until recently dressed in a uniform modelled on that state’s pro-Nazi militia.

With about 50% of the vote counted, Mr Fico’s Smer-Social Democracy party is on about 29% support, which would give it 48 seats in the 150-member parliament.

As the leader of the strongest party in Saturday’s poll, Mr Fico is expected to be asked to form a new government.

Mr Fico, 51, is known for populist policies such as free train travel for students and pensioners.

He has fiercely opposed EU quotas on migrant resettlement from Greece and Italy, which would see his country take about 2,600 people.

Slovakia received only 260 asylum requests last year.

Media captionRobert Fico and the migrant question, in 70 seconds

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