Slovak Minister Quits, Urges Premier to Leave Too to End Crisis

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Slovakia’s economy minister resigned, urging the prime minister to step down and allow a wider cabinet reshuffle as well that should quell turmoil sparked by a deal to purchase coronavirus vaccines from Russia.

Prime Minister Igor Matovic has been under pressure to leave his post after his coalition partners complained that he agreed to buy 2 million Sputnik V shots without their consent.

The deal also drew rebuke from President Zuzana Caputova and raised concerns that it could undermine the foreign-policy orientation of the European Union and NATO nation.

Slovak Minister Quits, Urges Premier to Leave Too to End Crisis

The leader of the junior ruling Freedom and Solidarity party, Richard Sulik, submitted his resignation to Caputova on Monday, a day after Matovic asked him to do so as one of the conditions for his own departure. Sulik said his party is against early elections.

“The government has been paralyzed for about three weeks now,” he told a televised news conference. “I believe that my step will help unblock the government again.”

The four-way ruling alliance has been rocked by infighting and personal animosities since it took power last year. Still, the government has overseen a wide anti-corruption sweep of the police, judiciary and business circles.

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