Slovenia. According to countryaah, Ljubljana is the capital and one of the major cities within the country of Slovenia. Parliament voted in February with a large majority for ratification of the EU Treaty on a new constitution. Slovenia became the third EU country to approve the treaty, but the referendum in France in May put a stop to the process.
- Also see abbreviationfinder.org for how the acronym SI stands for the country of Slovenia and other meanings of this two-letter abbreviation.
In May, a former security chief for genocide was prosecuted after World War II. 86-year-old Mitja Ribićić was charged with ordering executions of 234 people suspected of conspiring with the Nazis. After the war, the communist regime in what was then Yugoslavia chased people who had cooperated with the occupying power. Ribićić became the first to be prosecuted for this under new legislation in Slovenia.
On March 29, 2004, Slovenia and 6 other Eastern bloc countries joined NATO. It was the largest alliance to date, and now counts 26 countries.
A referendum launched by the right wing in April 2004 gave a large majority a proposal to deprive the ethnic minorities of the country of their civil rights after Parliament granted them these rights. The result was sharply criticized by the international human rights organizations, creating an embarrassing situation for the government preparing for the country’s accession to the EU.
On May 1, 2004, Slovenia, along with 9 other countries, was admitted to the EU. Slovenia was the only country among the former Yugoslav republics so far occupied. The country was the second most developed among the newly admitted countries; its incomes are at 70% of the EU average; it lies over Greece; while unemployment, on the other hand, is lower than in Germany and France, making the country a net contributor to the EU.
SDS surprisingly won the parliamentary elections in October. The center-right party gained 30% of the vote, thus gaining 6% more than the Liberal government. New Prime Minister Janez Jansa sought support from the smaller parties on the right to secure parliamentary majority.
The Slovenian parliament voted by a large majority for the EU’s new constitution in May 2005. However, the constitution was voted down by referendums in France and the Netherlands that same month. In May 2006, the EU approved Slovenia’s entry into the Eurozone from 2007. Prior to this, a one-year trial period was to be held during which the country’s currency was locked to the Euro. In January 2007, Slovenia switched to Euro, becoming the first new Member State to take this step.
During 2013, an increasingly clear polarization of the political climate was superimposed on the Slovenian financial crisis. These two factors set the stage for mass demonstrations that started in the city of Maribor. The level of trust of citizens towards the elites policies declined due to further corruption investigations and a lack of transparency in parliament. Disheartened in February 2013, Janša’s conservative government was replaced by a new executive chaired by Alenka Bratušek, a member of positive Slovenia and the first woman to hold the post of premier. In order to avoid an international intervention for the financial rescue of Slovenia, the new government adopted austerity policies and ordered the sale of some state-owned companies, but already in May 2014, following the personal defeat of his party in the congress, Bratušek resigned his resignation. The coalition refused to consider Janković’s candidacy, under investigation for corruption, and Pahor – elected president of the Republic in November 2012 by defeating Türk – called early elections for the month of July. The consultations saw the unexpected victory of the Party of Miro Cerar (SMC), which was named after its leader and was formed only five weeks before the elections. With 36 seats in Parliament, Cerar assumed the post of premier and formed a coalition government with SD and DeSUS.
In foreign policy, in relations with its Balkan neighbors, Slovenia tried to maintain a balanced approach: in March 2008, it recognized Kosovo as an independent state, while the decision to resolve the border dispute with Croatia through international arbitration was approved by the citizens in a referendum in June 2010. In April 2013 the Slovenian Parliament ratified the association agreement with Croatia, a fundamental step for Croatian entry into the EU. After a regulatory intervention to this effect was rejected in a referendum in 2012, in March 2015 the Slovenian Parliament approved some amendments to the law on marriage and family relations, establishing the equality of same-sex couples with heterosexual ones.