Morning Headlines for Slovenia: Saturday, 12 September 2020

By , 12 Sep 2020, 04:00 AM News
Morning Headlines for Slovenia: Saturday, 12 September 2020 Flicker - kuhnmi - CC-by-0

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This summary is provided by the STA:

Record 108 coronavirus cases from 2,758 tests on Thursday

LJUBLJANA - Slovenia saw 108 new coronavirus cases on Thursday, a record-high daily tally, after 2,758 tests were conducted, likewise the highest daily number so far. A total of 27 persons are in hospital currently, including five in intensive care. There are currently 701 active cases in the country, according to national tracker site Covid-19.sledilnik. Among the latest cases, there were six detected in health workers, six in residents of care homes and one in care home staff. The latest infections bring Slovenia's overall tally of cases to 3,498, while the death toll remains at 135.

Schools record 86 infections in two weeks, classes remain in-person

LJUBLJANA - School classes remain in-person in Slovenia as there is currently no need to change the strategy, the Education Ministry said. There were 86 coronavirus infections in primary and secondary schools in the first ten days of the new school year and 917 quarantine orders were issued. Out of the 86 cases, 27 were confirmed in primary school students and two in secondary school students. The rest were staff. A total of 521 students were issued quarantine orders and 223 were told to self-isolate.

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DeSUS and Janša meet after Pivec's resignation opens several issues

LJUBLJANA - Prime Minister Janez Janša met Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) MPs and the party's interim leader Tomaž Gantar to discuss issues resulting from the resignation of DeSUS leader Aleksandra Pivec. The party, which continues to support the government coalition, would like Pivec to leave as agriculture minister and a deputy prime minister. "Pivec does not represent anyone but herself now," said Gantar, who serves as health minister. He announced the coalition would discuss these issues in detail the next time it meets, presumably on Monday.

Logar hosts NATO ambassadors, underlines Slovenia's commitment to alliance

LJUBLJANA - Foreign Minister Anže Logar hosted a working lunch for NATO member state ambassadors accredited to Slovenia. He presented plans aimed to help Slovenia meet its NATO commitments and stressed the importance of joint values and transatlantic ties, which are among the government's priorities. At what was the first meeting of this sort after Slovenia joined the alliance in 2004, Logar underlined Slovenia's commitment to the goals and values that are the cornerstone of NATO and to being a responsible ally, the Foreign Ministry said.

Criminal complaint filed against Minister Hojs over police review

LJUBLJANA - An anonymous criminal complaint has been filed with the District State Prosecution against Interior Minister Aleš Hojs over abuse of office caused by his recent order for a review of five closed National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) cases. This is a criminal complaint "over the demand to examine why nothing happened after millions of damage to public funds and money laundering for terrorists", Hojs wrote on Twitter, where he also published a part of the complaint.

Protesters urge power to the people

LJUBLJANA - The 21st consecutive Friday protests in the centre of Ljubljana placed people's power in the focus. Protesters urged both individuals and the civil society to stand up to the government. They rose up torches and banners urging the people to defend democracy on the street. Some of the speakers accused the opposition parties of doing too little to fight government policies.

Govt defends supplementary budget

LJUBLJANA - Responding to the reservations expressed by the Fiscal Council about the proposed supplementary budget for this year and the revised budget framework for 2020-2022, the government said that the stimulus packages had been estimated to have positive effects on the economy. It also stressed that the situation was uncertain. The Fiscal Council had said the projected budget reserves seemed excessive, the revised borrowing ceiling failed to reflect the current budgetary needs, while expenditure not associated with the pandemic was slated to accelerate at a faster pace than in the valid budget for the year.

Judicial Council wants appointment of judges free of politics

LJUBLJANA - Unhappy with Slovenian judges being appointed by parliament, the Judicial Council has decided to launch an initiative to change the constitution and the judicial service law to transfer the appointment from the National Assembly to another institution. "Judiciary needs the best legal experts, so it is urgent that party politics withdraws from the appointment procedure," the council's head Erik Kerševan said. He did not specify which institution should take over the appointment procedure.

NSi proposing extension of tourism vouchers

LJUBLJANA - The junior coalition New Slovenia (NSi) has drafted several initiatives to be presented to coalition partners for this autumn. They include lowering of taxes, measures to boost development, and an extension of the validity of tourism vouchers, NSi deputy group head Jožef Horvat said. According to Horvat, tourism vouchers have been welcomed by the people, but so far only EUR 90 million of them were cashed in, while their total value is EUR 350 million. The NSi has also prepared several other initiatives to encourage development, preserve jobs, and promote entrepreneurship, the construction of infrastructure and sport activities.

Turkish owner drops extensive investment at Lesna TIP, Večer reports

DRAVOGRAD -Turkish-owned company Yildiz Entegre Adria, which acquired Lesna TIP in early 2018, will not go ahead with the announced extensive investments in the Slovenian wood-processing company and has already started laying off its employees, the newspaper Večer reported. The company had announced to invest some EUR 45 million into the factory, as well as 150 new jobs in the first stage and up to 300 in the next one. However, the investment was delayed several times, even though the company received a state incentive, and production, stopped in December 2015, was not yet re-launched.

Opera and ballet Ljubljana presents six premieres this season

LJUBLJANA - The new season of the SNG Opera and Ballet Ljubljana will start with a slight delay in November, as two performances from the previous season, cancelled because of coronavirus, will be staged first. According to the opera director, Staš Ravter, the programme of the new season is bold and ambitious despite the coronavirus situation. Two premieres that could not be held last season because of the epidemic will be staged this month and the next - the opera Pagliacci, Cavalleria Rusticana by Ruggiero Leoncavallo and Pietro Mascagni will be on on 8 October. The first premiere opening the new season will be opera Unicorn by Pavel Šivic.

Severed hand case ends with prison sentences

LJUBLJANA - The young woman who cut off her hand at the beginning of last year to claim insurance, and her partner, who presumably put her up to it, were found guilty of insurance fraud at the Ljubljana District Court. They were given two and three years in prison, respectively. Julija Adlešič and her partner Sebastien Abramov attracted a lot of media attention during the trial, including by allegedly getting engaged. Both claimed throughout the trial they were innocent, and that Adlešič cut off her hand by accident while sawing off tree branches. The defence announced an appeal today, with Abramov's lawyer Mitja Pavčič speaking of "human rights violations". The prosecution had demanded four years and six months for Adlešič and five years for Abramov.

Slovenian riders extended dominance at the Tour de France

LYON, France - Slovenian riders Primož Roglič and Tadej Pogačar took the top two positions in the overall standings at the Tour de France after finishing the 13th stage of the race well ahead of other top contenders. Roglič (Jumbo-Visma), who has held the yellow jersey since stage nine, and Pogačar (UAE Team Emirates), who was seventh heading into today's stage, finished six minutes behind the stage winner Daniel Martinez (EF Pro Cycling). But more importantly, they left many top riders far behind, allowing Roglič to more than double his overall lead to 44 seconds and Pogačar to jump to second place.

Mura passes first qualifying round of UEFA Europa League

BUDAPEST, Hungary - The Slovenian football club Mura defeated Estonia's Nomme Kalju in the first qualifying round for the UEFA Europa League on neutral grounds in Budapest on Thursday evening to get Denmark's Aarhus Gymnastikforening in the second round, whom Mura will host on 17 September. While the runners-up in the Slovenian premier league, Maribor, is already out of the qualifiers, the third-placed Olimpija will be hosting Zrinjski of Bosnia-Herzegovina on 17 September, and the champions Celje awaits an opponent in the third round.

Laibach marks 40th anniversary with concert at Ljubljana Castle

LJUBLJANA - The legendary Slovenian band Laibach will perform at Ljubljana Castle for the first time ever this evening to celebrate its 40th anniversary. The organisers had to reduce the capacity of the courtyard to the allowed 500 visitors due to Covid-19 safety measures, so the band added an extra concert on Saturday, which was also sold out. The Laibach concert was planned as the opening event of the Dragon Festival, a traditional three-day event on the castle hill. Due to the current situation, most of the planned programme had to be cancelled or postponed to 2021.

Downsized Ljubljana Marathon to be held on 25 October

LJUBLJANA - Ljubljana Marathon received the green light from the National Institute for Public Health (NIJZ) to host on 25 October what is known as the largest running event in the country. Although significantly downsized due to coronavirus, the marathon will be held, director Gojko Zalokar confirmed for the STA. As customary, the tracks will be 10, 21 and 42 kilometres long, he added. Because of coronavirus restrictions, this year only up to 500 participants will be able to take part, including 50 representatives of the organisers. This year's marathon will be 25th, but the anniversary will be marked next year, Zalokar said.

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