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Slovakia’s opposition extends non-aggression pact in bid to oust Smer

Bratislava, Slovakia – ‘Freedom and Solidarity’ (SaS), a liberal opposition party led by Richard Sulik, has agreed to join the so-called non-aggression pact signed by several oppositions movements ahead of Slovakia’s parliamentary elections.

According to the TASR news agency, SaS confirmed the information late last week.

The non-aggression pact was first signed in July by the Progressive Slovakia (PS)-Spolu coalition, which came first in this year’s European election and spearheaded the election of political novice Zuzana Caputova as the country’s first female president, along with the Christian Democratic Movement (KDH).

It was later joined by the ‘Za Ludi’ party, founded by former President Andrej Kiska shortly after leaving office last summer.

Falling short of a cooperation agreement, the non-aggression pact contains a number of commitments: all parties agree not to launch attacks against each other during the election campaign and vow to work to find common ground for the future government’s program priorities.

They also rule out any post-election cooperation with the ruling Smer-SD party, junior coalition partner SNS and the far-right ‘People’s Party Our Slovakia’ (LSNS).

Both the PS-Spolu coalition and ‘Za Ludi’, founded after the last 2016 parliamentary elections, don’t hold any seat in Parliament.

Last month, after long negotiations, Slovakia’s opposition parties failed to reach an agreement to establish a so-called “coalition of change”. “Coalitions make sense only if the support for such coalitions would be higher than the combined support for individual parties”, Kiska told reporters.

While most opposition parties have ruled out cooperation with Smer and its coalition partners, Robert Fico’s party, which still leads in the polls, also announced it would refuse to govern with the far-right LSNS party of Marian Kotleba, polling high in recent surveys.

The outcome of Slovakia’s February elections, seen as one of the most important in recent years, remains clouded in uncertainty.

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