Skip to main content »

Slovenia Weekly

The refugee issue concerns us all



The refugee issue is an issue of our joint future. Photo: Mostphotos
Only in the last few days, about 1,000 refugees died when crossing the Mediterranean, while even up to a million are expected to embark on the perilous journey in the next few weeks. Unfortunately, the new century and decade have brought new refugee drama, the boat people in the 21st century. The issue of refugees that flee Africa in the hope of a better future in Europe concerns us all and should be resolved together. European governments have begun to deal with the humanitarian crisis seriously and adopted four political commitments to prevent new tragedies. These will have to be put into practice as soon as possible, and, according to the President of the Club of Former Slovenian Ambassadors Peter Toš, this should begin with "the fundamental right, right to life ". When faced with the inflow of refugees, particularly from Syria, Eritrea, Nigeria and Somalia that try to escape violence and poverty by crossing the Mediterranean, Slovenia is trying to help save as many lives as possible. It has shown solidarity by accepting refugees several times. In 2010, it accepted refugees from Malta, while in 2013 and 2014 its military boat took part in the Italian Mare Nostrum search and rescue operation, and is now taking part in the European Triton operation. At the meeting of the European Council, PM Cerar offered the assistance of the Slovenia military boat again.

“Slovenia has shown and will show solidarity”, said the PM, who is also aware of the limitations. He said that we cannot offer more that we can deliver. “We are talking about people in need, so Slovenia will make every effort to fulfil its duty to show solidarity, but will also highlight that integrative quality of the country and an appropriate level of internal security should be considered,” said Cerar.

Unfortunately, the reasons that compel people to take the journey across the sea remain. To resolve this issue, the EU should cooperate with the countries of origin and transition, and direct their efforts into a better visa regime and possibilities to find employment for the young, said Bogdan Benko, state secretary at the foreign ministry. The speech of the Speaker of the Ugandan Parliament, Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga, at the Africa Day conference in Ljubljana had a similar message, as she stressed that African do not really want to leave their continent but are compelled to do so by circumstances. "If you wish to help us, create opportunities for jobs, which will enable people to have normal lives.” Yes, we will also have to find answers to the questions of how to effectively deal with development challenges faced by African countries and help Africa to become a safer environment. Slovenia is very supportive of all diplomatic efforts of the EU that lead to refugee crisis and does not wish to remain a silent observer.

PM Cerar at the Eastern Partnership Summit on bolstering EU cooperation with partner countries

Slovenian PM Miro Cerar attended the Eastern Partnership Summit in Riga, where leaders of EU member states met representatives of the Eastern Partnership: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. They discussed further cooperation between the EU and these countries and issued a joint summit declaration, which, according to the Slovenia PM, reflects the continued support of the EU for the partner countries and their reform programmes. Against the backdrop of the meeting, the PM separately met the President of Ukraine and the Georgian PM. more...

Africa Day international conference: calls for a joint resolution of the refugee issue

On Tuesday, the opening ceremony marked the beginning of the fourth Africa Day two-day international conference, which this year is titled “Addressing New Development Challenges in Partnership” at the International Center for Promotion of Enterprises in Ljubljana. The issue of refugees fleeing Africa in the hope of finding a better future in Europe is part of out joint future and should be resolved together, was the message of several speakers on the first day of the conference. more...

Slovenia wants the EU to protect cultural diversity and limit unfair competition in field of AV

At the meeting of the Education, Youth, Culture and Sport Council on Tuesday, the culture minister Julijana Bizjak Mlakar said that the single digital market should fully consider the cultural and linguistic diversity of the EU and protect small and specific markets of audiovisual services, which are particularly vulnerable. more...

Slovenia among the first to discuss the strategy for a digital single market

Slovenia is among the first EU members where the European Commission, together with the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport, prepared a discussion on the recently presented strategy for a digital single market for Europe and its influence and implementation. According to the education minister, Maja Makovec Brenčič, effective implementation of set strategy measures will definitely help digital growth, the development of digital society in the European Union and Slovenia’s efforts and activities to establish a working digital environment. more...

Slovenia and Croatia are strong partners in tourism

On Thursday, Zdravko Počivalšek, the minister of economic development and technology and his Croatian counterpart Darko Lorencin, the minister for tourism had a working meeting in the Habakuk Congress Centre in Maribor on Thursday. They assessed existing cooperation between the countries, shared statistics on tourist visits in 2014, announced the forecast for the coming summer and discussed the possibilities of further bilateral cooperation on tourism. more...

22 May – Slovenian Diplomacy Day

On this day, twenty-three years ago, the diverse activities undertaken by Slovenian diplomats resulted in UN General Assembly Resolution No. 46/236, and the Republic of Slovenia joined the United Nations. As this step was the culmination of united, persistent and professional diplomatic endeavours, 22 May is symbolically celebrated as Slovenian Diplomacy Day. more...

Past editions


Every friday the Slovenian Weekly Newsletter brings you the latest updates on the work of the Slovenian Government.