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Slovak President Kiska decides not to seek re-election

May 15, 2018

FILE - In this Monday, Feb. 19, 2018 file photo, Slovak President Andrej Kiska adjusts his ear phone during a joint news conference with Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen at the Hofburg palace in Vienna, Austria. Slovak President Andrej Kiska said Tuesday May 15, 2018, he will not seek a second term in office in next year’s presidential election. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak, File)

BRATISLAVA, Slovakia (AP) — Slovak President Andrej Kiska says he will not seek a second term in office in next year’s presidential election.

The 55-year-old Kiska announced his decision Tuesday, saying he wants to spend more time with his family.

Kiska, a successful businessman-turned-philanthropist, was a political newcomer when he beat then-Prime Minister Robert Fico in the 2014 presidential election to take over the largely ceremonial post.

The pro-European and pro-western Kiska often clashed with Fico, considered a populist leader.

Earlier this year, Kiska supported the huge street protests that led to the fall of Fico’s coalition government amid a political crisis triggered by the February slayings of an investigative reporter and his fiancee.

The reporter, Jan Kuciak, was investigating possible widespread government corruption and Italian mob influence.

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