World News

Slovak ruling Smer party loses ground after political crisis

BRATISLAVA (Reuters) - Support for Slovakia’s ruling Smer party fell to 20.7 percent in April in an AKO agency poll published on Monday, dropping from 24.7 percent in February before the murder of an investigative journalist sparked a political crisis.

The journalist’s killing raised public anger over corruption allegations in the central European country, leading to the largest streets protests since the end of communism in 1989. Long-serving prime minister Robert Fico resigned in mid-March, handing power to a deputy Peter Pellegrini.

The AKO poll, conducted April 4-7, showed the largest opposition party SaS gaining, with 17.1 percent, up from 16.2 percent in the last poll in February. The country’s next election is scheduled for 2020.

Reporting by Tatiana Jancarikova; Editing by Toby Chopra