Support for Slovakia’s ruling party, Smer, has dropped by four percent since the February mass protests over the murder of a journalist who was investigating links between Slovak politicians and organized crime.
An AKO agency poll showed on Monday that support for Smer dropped from 24.7 percent in February to 20.7 percent in April. The opposition party SaS gained a little under one percent.
The murders of Jan Kuciak and his fiancée outraged the Slovak public and prompted the country’s largest protests since the fall of communism in 1989.
The 27-year-old was investigating the infiltration of the Italian ‘Ndrangheta mafia into Slovakia.
In his final story, published by the OCCRP and partners, the journalist detailed ties between the crime group and the highest echelons of the government of former Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico.
Kuciak was killed as he was researching an alleged defrauding of the European Union through an agriculture subsidy scam orchestrated by people linked to the ‘Ndrangheta.
Tens of thousands took to the streets after Kuciak’s murder and the publishing of his findings. The days-longs protests forced Fico to resign; Deputy Prime MInister Peter Pellegrini took his place.
Documents obtained by Reuters and the Daphne Project show two Panamanian companies owned by two Maltese politicians – one the Energy Minister and one the Prime Minister's Chief of Staff -- expected to get payments from an offshore company connected to the man who won a key government concession to build a large power plant.
Both Colombia and Ecuador have sent thousands of soldiers and police to their restive border on the Mataje River. But the violence is only growing, and some of the region’s most vulnerable people are caught in the crossfire.