PRAGUE (Reuters) - Slovakia must be prepared for a potential disruption of Russian natural gas supplies via Ukraine, Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico said on Thursday.

"We must be prepared that such a situation can actually come about," Fico said when asked about potential disruptions during a meeting with representatives of the main Slovak gas company, SPP.

Russia cut gas supplies to Ukraine on June 16 in a dispute over unpaid bills but so far has continued to supply gas which Ukraine sends on to Russia's clients.

Europe takes about a third of its gas imports from Russia, and about 40 percent of that amount flows through Ukraine and into the west via Slovakia.



(Reporting by Robert Muller, Editing by Michael Kahn)