Former Slovak justice minister and former president of his country's Supreme Court, Stefan Harabin, has been indicted for welcoming Russian President Vladimir Putin's decision to invade Ukraine, the prosecutor's office announced on Monday (June 5th).
Stefan Harabin wrote on Facebook in the aftermath of the Russian invasion on February 24, 2022 that he "would have done exactly the same thing as (Russian President Vladimir) Putin." He was charged with "defamation of a country and a people" and also for "glorifying a crime," said prosecutor's office spokeswoman Zuzana Drobova.
'Liquidate all Ukrainian Nazis'
Stefan Harabin could face up to three years in prison, according to the daily Dennik N. The former minister said on Monday he was "proud" to have made this statement, which he maintains, being convinced that Russia acted in accordance with international law, according to this daily. Stefan Harabin, a 66-year-old former communist, also said in an interview broadcast by the YouTube channel that Russia had "the duty to liquidate all Ukrainian Nazis responsible for killing 14,000 children, women and elderly people in Donbass since 2014."
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A highly critical of the EU, he served as Justice Minister in the populist government of Prime Minister Robert Fico (2006-2009), and was President of the Supreme Court, before running unsuccessfully in the 2019 presidential election. Slovakia, a European Union member country of 5.4 million people, has provided significant humanitarian and military aid to Kiev since Russia's invasion of Ukraine. At the end of March, Slovakia said it had obtained from the United States an offer for weapons worth more than a billion dollars, at a reduced rate, in compensation for thirteen MiG-29 fighters promised to Ukraine.