This summary is provided by the STA:
Record 59 Covid-19 patients died in Slovenia on Monday
LJUBLJANA - Slovenia saw a record 59 fatalities among patients with Covid-19 on Monday, which takes the death toll from the disease to 1,156. Another 1,302 coronavirus cases were confirmed, while 1,299 patients are still being treated in hospitals, including 204 in intensive care. Fresh data from the government show that 5,596 coronavirus tests were performed on Monday, which means 23.27% of the tests came back positive, down from almost 27% the day before and almost 30% on Saturday. Bojana Beović, the head of the government's coronavirus task force, announced that the group will propose the extension of existing restrictions this week since the situation does not yet warrant a relaxation of the measures.
Stimulus package No. 6 amended and okayed for plenary
LJUBLJANA - The sixth stimulus package, which extends or reactivates aid measures and introduces several new instruments, was cleared for the plenary after the Finance Committee added significant amendments. The latest package, valued at around EUR 1 billion, is meant to alleviate the impact of the coronacrisis on businesses and residents, extending once more the furlough scheme, measures to help liquidity and introducing, as a key novelty, help with fixed expenses. Part time work subsidies will also be continued, but it was said that this would be secured through a government decree and not with the new package.
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Govt preparing new stimulus package, businesses call for rapid tests as way to reopen economy
LJUBLJANA - While the sixth anti-coronavirus legislative package is being debated in parliament, the government is already planning a next package which looks to address issues brought by the new lockdown. Particular attention is to be paid to the sectors which have suffered the biggest losses in turnover this year and to vulnerable social groups. The Slovenian Business Club called for a widespread testing by means of rapid tests and prompt preparation of testing protocols in order to detect as many coronavirus infections as possible, contain their spread, and allow the economy to reopen.
Logar talks EU presidency challenges, rule of law at Berlin Forum
BERLIN, Germany - Foreign Minister Anže Logar addressed participants of the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum to highlight the priorities of Slovenia's EU presidency in the second half of next year and stress the importance of solidarity among EU member states. Logar said that solidarity among EU members also meant the search for a comprise acceptable for everybody. He argued that traditional democracies had a different view of the rule of law compared to countries that emerged from under repressive regimes 30 years ago, that the different perception angles needed to be accepted and that the goals were shared.
Complaint filed against Left MP over confidential information
LJUBLJANA - The chair of the Home Affairs Committee, Branko Grims of the ruling Democrats (SDS), filed a criminal complaint against opposition Left MP Miha Kordiš over his statements regarding the 5 November riots in Ljubljana after a session of the parliamentary body held behind closed doors due to sensitive classified information. Kordiš, the only MP to give a press statement on 13 November, responded by saying that Grims was using "fairy tales" to divert attention from problems faced by the country.
Opposition objects to Hungary's involvement in rail project
LJUBLJANA - The four left-leaning opposition parties jointly urged against government plans to involve Hungary in the construction of the new rail track to the port of Koper. Saying they want to "stop this madness", they argued the government was dismantling a completed financial plan, delaying the project, and making it more expensive. "The financial plan for the second rail was already closed in the budget adopted by the previous government and it remained closed in the budget the new coalition adopted last week," SAB's Alenka Bratušek, the former infrastructure minister, said.
MPs endorse police response to violent Ljubljana protest
LJUBLJANA - After four sessions dedicated to the matter, the coalition majority on the Home Affairs Committee established that the police acted suitably, professionally and efficiently in response to the 5 November protest in Ljubljana which turned into a riot. The opposition raised protest, with Jani Möderndorfer of the Marjan Šarec List (LMŠ) saying such a conclusion could only be made by experts, not MPs. There were also calls for an inquiry into the use of coercive measures, but a police official said the threshold for triggering an inquiry had not been reached.
Five bids for Constitutional Court judge in Pahor's new call
LJUBLJANA - President Borut Pahor has received five bids in what is a third call for applications for one vacancy on the Constitutional Court. The applicants include Andraž Teršek, candidate who failed to get appointed in the National Assembly in June after the first call, as well as Rok Svetlič, the head of the Law Institute at the Koper Science and Research Centre, and Marko Starman of the Nova Gorica-based European Faculty of Law, both of whom had applied previously but were not nominated by Pahor. Pahor will consult parliamentary factions on the nominees in the second week of December.
Condemnation as public health chief harassed by prominent anti-masker
LJUBLJANA - The director of the National Institute of Public Health (NIJZ) Milan Krek was harassed by the rapper Zlatko, a prominent anti-masker, on the street on Monday, drawing sharp condemnation. The event "constitutes an attack on an independent, professional public health institution, which is unprecedented," the NIJZ said. "It is outrageous that something like this happens in a democratic country such as Slovenia," Krek said in a separate statement. The incident also drew criticism from the Medical Chamber, which said it rejected "any intolerant communication and actions against health workers".
Top court admits case of late collaborationist general Rupnik
LJUBLJANA - The Constitutional Court has admitted what is one of three challenges of the Supreme Court's January quashing of the 1946 death sentence for collaborationist general Leon Rupnik. The court suspended the renewed criminal proceedings against Rupnik, arguing their potential termination would absolve Rupnik of his guilt.
Business sentiment deteriorates further in November
LJUBLJANA - Business sentiment in Slovenia deteriorated further in November as additional Covid-19 lockdown measures kicked in, with the relevant indicator dropping to -13.8 percentage points, or 6.8 points lower than in October and 16 points lower year-on-year. All sub-indicators were down on the monthly basis in November, in particular those measuring confidence in the services sector (-4 points) and confidence among consumers (-1.1 points).
Project to revitalise habitats along Mura gets financial boost
LJUBLJANA - The ongoing project to revitalise wetland habitats along the Mura river is to get EUR 2.3 million in EU cohesion funds, with the co-financing contract signed by Environment Minister Andrej Vizjak seen as a contribution in preserving natural resources and biodiversity in Slovenia. The Natura Mura project, which started in August, aims at improving the state of three habitat types and 12 qualified species along the river running through north-eastern Slovenia.
Avian flu confirmed in swan found in Piran
LJUBLJANA - Slovenia has confirmed a case of avian influenza in a dead swan found in the coastal municipality of Piran. The Administration for Food Safety, Veterinary Sector and Plant Protection said the strain of the virus confirmed was not dangerous to humans. The administration was notified of the case of the highly pathogenic H5N8 strain of bird flu in the sample from the swan by the National Veterinary Institute on Monday.
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