Photographers photograph the chairman of the Smer-Social Democracy party Robert Fico
Today on Telegraph Ukraine: the last podcast, we will hear directly from the ground in Ukraine, get insight from Brussels and take the Conservative Party's temperature as it begins its annual conference in Manchester.
ukraine pod 02 10 23
The Telegraph's Joe Barnes, correspondent in Brussels, reveals analysis of the recent elections in Slovakia:
Robert Fico is the leader of Slovakia's pro-Moscow populist left party, which won the bulk of the vote in Sunday's Slovak election with about 24 percent. Interestingly, exit polls suggested that the pro-Kiev Progress of Slovakia party was actually on track to win the election, but it turned out that pollsters got it completely wrong.
So Fico was essentially saying his victory speech, announced that he would begin negotiations with other parties to form a coalition.
He said he would do everything in his power to hold peace talks between Russia and Ukraine. And he said that more killings would not help anyone, which, at first glance, sounds very positive. I'm sure many leaders, and mostly Ukrainians, would like to see peace.
However, as Joe explains, it's not that simple:
What we really have to say is this that Robert Fico essentially comes from a Russian point of view.
So I think it's quite fair to say that there will be quite a lot of people in Brussels today who will be expressing concern about what his election victory means for immediate support for Ukraine. But does his pro-Moscow outlook also mean a potential loss of Slovakia in the short term, and perhaps even in the long term, to the Kremlin at a time when Western unity is crucial?
So losing the Slovaks as a donor is a huge blow for Kyiv, but I think it also represents a blow to NATO and Western efforts to continue to arm Ukraine simply because of geography. Slovakia is one of the four main countries bordering Ukraine through Europe, and it is one of the routes used as a transit route for military aid going to Ukraine.
So this is a real multi-faceted problem of the sort that how the EU and the West face the victory of a pro-Moscow leader.
Regular podcast host David Knowles called from the Conservative Party conference room to weigh in on the temperature of the event and its potential implications for Britain's long-term support for Ukraine:
The Conservative Party is currently trailing significantly in the polls. They have been in power here in the UK for over ten years. There are questions about when the next general election will be called.
The Conservative government is currently facing a variety of infrastructure questions, as well as internal tensions. Former Prime Minister Liz Trust hosted a small event that drew large crowds to hear her speak, a stark contrast to the virtually empty halls in which at least some cabinet ministers speak today.
< p >So this, this, this, Context, like I said, I was just here to try to understand people's views on Ukraine and support for Ukraine.
Referring to specific meetings, David continues to paint the picture:
The second event I attended had a much larger number of participants, but included the acting Ukrainian Ambassador to the UK, Eduard Fesco.
He told those present that 20,000 kilometers of roads were destroyed in Ukraine. This is 70-odd times the distance between London and Manchester. The scale of destruction is unimaginable. Only people who have visited Ukraine can feel this.
Listen to Ukraine: The Last, The Telegraph's daily podcast, using the audio player at the top of this article or on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or your favorite podcast app.
The war in Ukraine is changing our world. Every weekday, The Telegraph's leading journalists analyze the invasion from all angles – military, humanitarian, political, economic, historical – and tell you everything you need to know to stay informed.
Our< Strong> Ukraine: The Latestpodcast is your trusted source for the latest analysis, live reactions and on-the-ground reporting from correspondents. We have been broadcasting since the very beginning of the full-scale invasion.
Ukraine: Regular contributors to The Latest are:
David is head of audio development at The Telegraph, where he worked for almost three years. He reported from all over Ukraine during the full-scale invasion.
Dom is deputy editor (defence) at The Telegraph, having joined in 2018. He previously served in the British Army for 23 years in tank and helicopter units. He had operational deployments to Iraq, Afghanistan and Northern Ireland.
Francis is assistant comment editor at The Telegraph. Before working as a journalist, he was chief of staff to the Chairman of the Prime Minister's Policy Council in the Houses of Parliament in London. He studied history at Cambridge University and in the podcast reveals how the past sheds light on the latest diplomatic, political and strategic events.
They are also regularly joined by The Telegraph's foreign correspondents around the world, including Joe Barnes(Brussels), Sofia Yang (China), Natalia Vasilyeva (Russia), Roland Oliphant (Senior Reporter) and Colin Freeman (Reporter). Also in London are Venice Rainey (foreign weekend editor), Katie O'Neill (assistant foreign editor) and Verity Bowman(news reporter) ). appear frequently to offer updates.