Slovakian PM to resign due to Kuchak's murder

Slovakian Prime Minister Fico offers resignation

Slovakian Prime Minister Fico offers resignation

Slovakia's Prime Minister Robert Fico has offered to resign amid increasing pressure following the killing last month of a journalist investigating political corruption.

Slovakian daily Sme reported that Fico's Smer-SD party may field deputy prime minister Peter Pellegrini, 42, as a candidate to succeed Fico.

Fico, 53, has been struggling since February with a scandal over the killing of journalist Jan Kuciak and his fiancee.

Slovakia has witnessed its largest protest since anti-communism rallies in 1989, with an estimated 50,000 gathering in the capital, Bratislava. "If the president accepts it, I am ready to resign tomorrow".

Kuciak claimed that Italian businessmen with links to the Calabrian organised crime syndicate 'Ndrangheta had settled in eastern Slovakia, and had spent years embezzling European Union funds.

It's the right of President Andrej Kiska to name prime ministers, and he has called for either a major revamp of the cabinet or early elections to calm the situation.

The third party in the coalition, the Slovak National Party, announced after the resignation that they would want early elections should Most-Hid stop supporting Mr Fico, or if Mr Fico lost his majority in parliament.

One of the men released was an Italian who had done business deals with officials close to Mr Fico.

The offer may signal a victory for demonstrators who've blamed Fico for failing to make good on a promise to crack down on corruption.

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