Lifestyle

17 May 2019, 22:58 PM

May 17, 2019

The colourful and much-visited Trubarjeva Road in Ljubljana has been undergoing reconstruction since this February, and work will continue for another year. While small business owners, visitors and citizens are grappling with the new reality, many have almost forgotten how nice and lively this street used to be, with tourists and locals now walking on gravel and navigating an ever-changing system of diversion.

Living nearby and expecting this to happen, we snapped some photos at the end of last summer, when the construction works were announced, and are placing them side by side with some shots taken in the last few days. Work on the central section of the road has not yet commenced.

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17 May 2019, 14:47 PM

STA, 17 May 2019 - Marking International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, observed on 17 May, the Foreign Ministry pointed out that human rights applied for all and called for decriminalisation of same-sex relationships around the world.

The ministry noted the recent progress of ensuring human rights for the LGBTI community, but it also pointed out that in more than 70 countries, same-sex relationships were still criminalised and could result in the death penalty.

Even in countries with national legislation safeguarding LGBTI rights, the community is still facing discrimination, hate speech, prejudices or even stigma, said the ministry in its Friday's press release.

Thus, the rights of LGBTI persons are violated, including their citizenship, political, economic, social and cultural rights.

The criminalisation of same-sex intimacy allows the perpetrators of anti-LGBTI hate crimes to go unpunished while encouraging intolerance and violence within individual societies, said the ministry.

Countries thus need to fulfil their obligations based on international human rights protection documents, and do their best to provide equal treatment to everyone without discrimination.

Slovenia will continue to strive at the international level to keep the issues of discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity on the agenda of international and regional organisations, including the UN, CoE and EU.

This is in line with the EU guidelines on promoting and protecting all human rights of the LGBTI community as well as the EU guidelines on non-discrimination in external action.

Since 2016, Slovenia has been actively participating in the international Equal Rights Coalition, which is dedicated to the protection of the rights of LGBTI persons and strives to end discrimination and violence against them.

Marking the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOBIT), the International LGBTI Asscociation ILGA, which cooperates with the CoE, has published the Rainbow Europe Map, ranking countries according to their level of anti-LGBTI discrimination and violation of LGBTI human rights.

Slovenia ranked 20th among 49 countries, ahead of Estonia and following Hungary.

The ILGA warned that Slovenia still did not ensure completely equal marriage laws for everybody, nor did it unequivocally grant same-sex couples the right to adopt children or to artificial insemination.

The association also pointed out that the country had a law banning hate speech based on sexual orientation, but it did not have a law banning hate speech on the grounds of gender identity.

The Slovenian NGO Legebitra called for en end to violence against LGBT persons, including verbal abuse in public, discrediting of LGBT organisations, bullying, discrimination in healthcare or other institutions as well as physical abuse.

The organisation said that homophobia, biphobia and transphobia were still present in society, while LGBT rights NGOs were being targeted more frequently due to the rise of fake news.

According to them, promoting hate and violence against the LGBT community has pervaded some parties' manifestos and politicians' statements ahead of the EU elections.

Legebitra has thus urged all the parties and candidates standing in the upcoming EU elections to oppose this discrimination and to protect LGBT rights.

16 May 2019, 12:00 PM

Looking through a recent report on immigration and Slovenia, we found an interesting table at the end, created using Eurostat data, showing the number of foreign citizens registered as resident in Slovenia by country of birth. The headline news was that out of total of 2,066,880 people living in Slovenia (as of January 2018), 250,226 were born in another country, with the vast majority (86%) being from other Ex-Yugoslavian nations.

Related: The places where foreigners live in Slovenia and where they come from (July 2016 data)

Since such figures are of obvious interest to our readers, we reproduce them below in two forms. First, place of birth ranked by number of residents, and second (here) in alphabetical order. Note that continents and regions are also included in the data, and we know that Africa is not a country.

Place of birth, by number

Slovenia 1,816,654

Bosnia and Herzegovina 107,676

Croatia 44,994

Serbia 25,372

Northern Macedonia 17,128

Kosovo 17,050

Germany 7,255

Italy 4,136

Montenegro 3,344

Russia 3,009

Asia 2,966

Austria 2,641

Ukraine 2,495

America 2,358

Bulgaria 1,241

North America 1,140

East Asia 1,123

France 1,119

China including Hong Kong 977

Switzerland 922

South America 832

Africa 822

United States 768

United Kingdom 642

West Asia 554

Slovakia 541

South East Asia 529

South Asia 464

Hungary 429

Argentina 413

Romania 407

Poland 392

Canada 372

Oceania 372

Australia and New Zealand 368

Czech Republic 363

Moldova 361

Australia 342

Netherlands 336

North Africa 333

Sweden 324

Belgium 308

Central Asia 296

Caribbean 288

Thailand 269

West Africa 214

Syria 199

Belarus 192

Kazakhstan 187

Dominican

Republic of 185

Turkey 184

India 181

Spain 179

Brazil 165

East Africa 164

Philippines 150

Iran 143

Egypt 127

Albania 126

Greece 119

Central America 98

Iraq 93

Japan 87

Cuba 85

Mexico 78

Tunisia 78

Venezuela 75

Uzbekistan 70

Denmark 68

Nigeria 64

South Africa 62

Jordan 60

Portugal 59

Ireland 58

South Africa (Rep.) 58

Ghana 56

Indonesia 56

Peru 56

Central Africa 49

Colombia 49

Libya 47

Pakistan 46

Lithuania 46

Israel 42

Luxembourg 41

Afghanistan 38

Finland 37

Algeria 37

Chile 36

South Korea 35

Kenya 33

Morocco 31

Guinea-Bissau 31

Lebanon 30

Nepal 28

New Zealand 27

Eritrea 26

Somalia 25

Azerbaijan 25

Georgia 24

Norway 23

Cameroon 23

Estonia 22

Vietnam 22

Taiwan 22

Saudi Arabia 21

Gambia 20

Kyrgyzstan 13

Madagascar 18

Armenia 18

Sri Lanka 17

United Arab Emirates 17

Ethiopia 16

Zimbabwe 15

Yemen 15

Uruguay 14

Bangladesh 13

Kuwait 12

Sudan 12

Turkmenistan 12

Bolivia 12

Democratic Republic of Congo 11

Malaysia 11

Ecuador 11

Liberia 10

Liechtenstein 10

Singapore 9

Tajikistan 9

Congo 9

Cambodia 8

Cyprus 7

Guinea 7

Jamaica 7

Malta 7

Mauritius 7

Zambia 7

Burkina Faso 7

Iceland 6

Costa Rica 6

Sierra Leone 5

Uganda 5

Belize 5

Burundi 4

Cape Verde 4

Mali 4

Mongolia 4

Mozambique 4

Nicaragua 4

Palestine 4

Senegal 4

Trinidad and Tobago 4

Angola 4

Ivory Coast 3

Honduras 3

Laos 3

Malawi 3

Melanesia 3

Namibia 3

Paraguay 3

Tanzania 3

Barbados 3

Central African Republic 2

Guyana 2

Haiti 2

Myanmar / Burma 2

Panama 2

Papua New Guinea 2

Qatar 2

Rwanda 2

Western Sahara 2

Aruba (NL) 2

Benin 1

Botswana 1

Chad 1

Dominica 1

Salvador 1

Fiji 1

Former Netherlands Antilles 1

Gabon 1

Guatemala 1

Maldives 1

North Korea 1

Oman 1

Polynesia 1

San Marino 1

St. Thomas and Prince 1

Togo 1

Wallis and Futuna 1

Andorra 1

In alphabetical order

Afghanistan 38

Africa 822

Albania 126

Algeria 37

America 2,358

Andorra 1

Angola 4

Argentina 413

Armenia 18

Aruba (NL) 2

Asia 2,966

Australia 342

Australia and New Zealand 368

Austria 2,641

Azerbaijan 25

Bangladesh 13

Barbados 3

Belarus 192

Belgium 308

Belize 5

Benin 1

Bolivia 12

Bosnia and Herzegovina 107,676

Botswana 1

Brazil 165

Bulgaria 1,241

Burkina Faso 7

Burundi 4

Cambodia 8

Cameroon 23

Canada 372

Cape Verde 4

Caribbean 288

Central Africa 49

Central African Republic 2

Central America 98

Central Asia 296

Chad 1

Chile 36

China including Hong Kong 977

Colombia 49

Congo 9

Costa Rica 6

Croatia 44,994

Cuba 85

Cyprus 7

Czech Republic 363

Democratic Republic of Congo 11

Denmark 68

Dominica 1

Dominican

East Africa 164

East Asia 1,123

Ecuador 11

Egypt 127

Eritrea 26

Estonia 22

Ethiopia 16

Fiji 1

Finland 37

Former Netherlands Antilles 1

France 1,119

Gabon 1

Gambia 20

Georgia 24

Germany 7,255

Ghana 56

Greece 119

Guatemala 1

Guinea 7

Guinea-Bissau 31

Guyana 2

Haiti 2

Honduras 3

Hungary 429

Iceland 6

India 181

Indonesia 56

Iran 143

Iraq 93

Ireland 58

Israel 42

Italy 4,136

Ivory Coast 3

Jamaica 7

Japan 87

Jordan 60

Kazakhstan 187

Kenya 33

Kosovo 17,050

Kuwait 12

Kyrgyzstan 13

Laos 3

Lebanon 30

Liberia 10

Libya 47

Liechtenstein 10

Lithuania 46

Luxembourg 41

Madagascar 18

Malawi 3

Malaysia 11

Maldives 1

Mali 4

Malta 7

Mauritius 7

Melanesia 3

Mexico 78

Moldova 361

Mongolia 4

Montenegro 3,344

Morocco 31

Mozambique 4

Myanmar / Burma 2

Namibia 3

Nepal 28

Netherlands 336

New Zealand 27

Nicaragua 4

Nigeria 64

North Africa 333

North America 1,140

North Korea 1

Northern Macedonia 17,128

Norway 23

Oceania 372

Oman 1

Pakistan 46

Palestine 4

Panama 2

Papua New Guinea 2

Paraguay 3

Peru 56

Philippines 150

Poland 392

Polynesia 1

Portugal 59

Qatar 2

Republic of 185

Romania 407

Russia 3,009

Rwanda 2

Salvador 1

San Marino 1

Saudi Arabia 21

Senegal 4

Serbia 25,372

Sierra Leone 5

Singapore 9

Slovakia 541

Slovenia 1,816,654

Somalia 25

South Africa (Rep.) 58

South Africa 62

South America 832

South Asia 464

South East Asia 529

South Korea 35

Spain 179

Sri Lanka 17

St. Thomas and Prince 1

Sudan 12

Sweden 324

Switzerland 922

Syria 199

Taiwan 22

Tajikistan 9

Tanzania 3

Thailand 269

Togo 1

Trinidad and Tobago 4

Tunisia 78

Turkey 184

Turkmenistan 12

Uganda 5

Ukraine 2,495

United Arab Emirates 17

United Kingdom 642

United States 768

Uruguay 14

Uzbekistan 70

Venezuela 75

Vietnam 22

Wallis and Futuna 1

West Africa 214

West Asia 554

Western Sahara 2

Yemen 15

Zambia 7

Zimbabwe 15

16 May 2019, 08:39 AM

STA, 14 May 2019 - Although the general belief in Slovenia is that immigrants from the Western Balkan countries are mostly unqualified labourers, a survey presented by the charity Caritas on Tuesday suggests that most immigrants have secondary education and are often overqualified for the work they do in Slovenia.

Interestingly, Slovenia also does not export only young educated people but also unqualified workers and the number of people leaving the county almost matches the number of people moving into Slovenia, says the publication Our Common Home (Naš skupni dom), funded by the European Commission and the Slovenian Foreign Ministry.

In 2017, 17,555 people moved out of the country, mostly to other EU countries, while 18,808 people moved to Slovenia.

Slovenians living abroad significantly contribute to the development of Slovenia, the authors say. "Our data show that the Slovenian diaspora contributes more (to Slovenia) than the immigrants here contribute to their source countries," a co-author of the publication, Nina Stenko Primožič, said at today's presentation.

Most migrants in Slovenia (86%) were born in one of the Western Balkan countries. According to Eurostat data from 2018, 108,000 of them were born in Bosnia-Herzegovina, 45,000 in Croatia, 25,000 in Serbia, 17,000 in Kosovo, 17,000 in North Macedonia and 3,300 in Montenegro.

Most of the people moving to Slovenia have finished high school but since they could not find a job that would suit their education, they take on jobs for which they are overqualified and accept lower pay.

However, most young people from the Western Balkan countries who currently reside in Slovenia are highly qualified and often work as experts.

In 2015, 10% of female immigrants and 8% of male immigrants in Slovenia had tertiary education. Among Slovenians, the share of people with tertiary education was higher, at 25.7%. But the authors of the publication note that not all highly qualified people from the Western Balkans move to Slovenia.

Foreign students accounted for 4.5% of all students in tertiary education in Slovenia in 2017/2018, according to data by the Statistics Office. Most of them (over 90%) came from the Western Balkan countries, especially North Macedonia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia, and EU countries (mostly Croatia).

Among migrants from non-EU countries, most came from Russia (3,000), China (977), the US (768), Argentina (456) and Canada (372). Migrants from Russia were highly educated (more than 50% of men and 43% of women had tertiary education). Among South Americans, 35% of men and 40% of women finished tertiary education.

Since the end of the crisis, companies and public institutions in Slovenia are trying to attract highly qualified staff from abroad, doctors in particular. In mid-2018, the government prepared legislative changes facilitating the hiring of doctors from non-EU countries.

According to data from 2016, 13% of the 7,500 doctors in Slovenia were foreigners.

The biggest share of migrants from the EU (24%) live in central Slovenia, 18% in Podravje in the north-east and 14% in the western and coastal region.

Most people from Bosnia-Herzegovina live in central Slovenia as do more than half of those from Montenegro and almost 40% of those from Serbia.

People from Albania and Kosovo are more widespread around the country, mostly because of their family businesses.

Many migrants who moved to Slovenia while it was still a part of Yugoslavia live in the areas which used to be strong industrial centres.

According to Eurostat data, just over 250,000 people living in Slovenia at the beginning of 2018 were born outside the country, which is 12.1% of the population. More than a half of them had Slovenian citizenship.

The publication is a part of the project MIND (Migration. Interconnectedness. Development.), financed by the European Commission and led by Caritas Austria with Caritas Europa in the co-lead and ten further Caritas organisations as partners.

The full report, in Slovenian, can be found here

15 May 2019, 16:08 PM

It’s the time of the Ice Saints, and in Slovenia this year Ledeni Možje have brought with them the coldest period in May for 15 years, and as I sit here now writing this, Polulana Zofka is truly pissing herself.

Confused? Let me explain.

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Rain clouds clearing over the Kamnik Alps after a day of heavy rain last week. On the higher ground they brought snow.

The Ice Saints

Ledeni Možje (the Ice Men) is a legend in Slovenia that derives from a wider legend throughout much of Europe, the legend of the Ice Saints. The three Ice Saints are Saint Boniface, Saint Pancras, and Saint Servatius. Their feast days are celebrated on May 11th, 12th and 13 across much of Southern Europe. In Slovenia however, the days are 12th, 13th and 14th. During this period in Central Europe it’s often believed there is a sharp drop in temperature. Farmers in many European countries will not plant their crops until after this period has passed; chiefly because it can also bring a late frost.

Pissing Sophia

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Rain over Lake Bohinj, Triglav National Park, Slovenia.

Today, May 15th, is the feast day of Saint Sophia of Rome, known here in Slovenia as Mokra Zofka (Wet Sophia) or under the more comical name of Polulana Zofka (Pissing Sophia). Traditionally on Saint Sophia’s Day it rains a lot.

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In Slovenia it’s easy to be confused about the weather this time of year. It can be sunny one minute, and rainy the next. Best to be prepared as this man with the umbrella was in Kongresni Square, Ljubljana, Slovenia.

So, in Slovenian Folklore if the Ice Men bring the cold weather, and Sophia pisses herself, then the belief is that this heralds a very hot and sunny summer.

Well over the last few days the temperatures have plummeted to mark the coldest May for 15 years. A couple of weeks ago it was over 20 degrees and sunny. Today it is 6 degrees and truly pissing down with rain. So if the legend is true, we are in for a very hot summer indeed.

As a Slovene who is used to hot summers, my wife is very happy about this. But as a wimpy Englishman who hates the heat and, as a landscape photographer who also hates hot, clear sunny days because clear skies are boring and heat produces humidity which reduces clarity, I feel a sense of foreboding.

Time to invest in that air conditioning unit, and a photography trip to cooler climates!

You can enjoy more of Ian's travel writing and photography elsewhere on Total Slovenia News, or on his website.
15 May 2019, 15:00 PM

Zala & Gašper are through to the finals of Eurovision, taking place in Tel Aviv this Saturday. While the focus of this year’s contest is likely to be political, due to the location of the event and Iceland’s entry, viewers in Slovenia will be playing close attention to the duo from Maribor and their song, “Sebi”, which forgoes the usual splashy pop and colourful, frenetic staging for a moody ballad, with the artists likely to perform, as usual, dressed in white, without dancers.

One version of the origin story has it that Zala Kralj and Gašper Šantl, a couple in real life, first began their collaboration in 2017, after Gašper, already a songwriter, found Zala singing covers on Instagram. Another claims that they were introduced by a mutual friend, Žiga Krajnac, who has directed all their videos.

The duo performing the song in English

The pair only started formally working together in 2018, and since then have been signed to Universal Music and released four singles, including last year’s winner of Slovenia’s Zlata Piščal (Golden Whistle) award, for the song “Valovi” (“Waves”).

Despite the low-sex, low colour image of the pair, they’re not without obvious humour, as seen in their frequent use of a fox mask, on display in the video shown above.

Instead of building an image around flashy costumes or brazen sexuality, a look at how Zala & Gašper present themselves shows a downtempo, moody aesthetic. It was perhaps this that caused many in Slovenia’s pop establishment to favour Raiven over the duo when it came time to choose the country’s entry for Eurovision. Indeed, Raiven was ahead in the official part of the selection process, and Zala & Gašper are only in Tel Aviv due to the use of a popular vote in the final round, which they won with 72.89%. This upset caused Lea Sirk, last year’s Eurovision entry (“Hvala, Ne”), to swear on live TV (f***, come on, I can’t f***ing believe this).

Lea Sirk explaining in backstage: Zdaj je cela senzacija okrog tega, zakaj sem jaz rekla, ozvočena, faking ne morem verjet. In ja, to sem faking mislila: ne morem verjet, ker sem bila prepričana, da bo zmagala Raiven. Ko jih jebe! (Now there’s a total sensation about why have I said, on a mic, I can’t f***ing believe this. And yes, this is what I f***ing meant: I can’t believe (this) cause I was certain Raiven would have won. F*** them!)

You can watch the finals on Saturday night, and cheer on Zala & Gašper or your own favourite from the usual Eurovision line-up of the strange and unexpected. One thing to note is that Leak Sirk will be relaying Slovenia’’s votes to Tel Aviv on Saturday night, and one wonders who she wants to win.

15 May 2019, 08:00 AM

STA, 13 May 2019 – May 13 marked 40 years to the day since Andrej Štremfelj and Nejc Zaplotnik made history as the first Slovenians who reached the summit of the highest mountain in the world. On this occasion, the Slovenian Alpine Museum in Mojstrana (NW) honoured the anniversary with a ceremony and an exhibition about their conquest of Mount Everest.

Štremfelj and Zaplotnik were part of a Yugoslav expedition which featured 25 members, with 21 of them being Slovenians, and was led by Slovenian mountaineer Tone Škarja.

The two mountaineers achieved their goal after 45 days of climbing the mountain's western ridge in extreme weather conditions and struggling with oxygen deprivation.

The museum located under Triglav, Slovenia's highest mountain, started the ceremony exactly at 01:51pm, when, according to local time, Zaplotnik announced the exciting news to the base camp.

"Tone, we're at the top. We're sitting at the Chinese pyramid and don't know what to do," he famously said.

Books about Slovenia: Alpine Warriors, A History of Modern Slovenian Alpinism

Two days later the peak was also reached by Slovenian mountaineer Stane Belak - Šrauf and Stipe Božić, the first Croatian to summit Mount Everest, as well as Nepalese mountaineer Ang Phu.

A majority of the Slovenian members of the 1979 expedition and representatives of the Mountaineering Association were received today by President Borut Pahor, who congratulated them on the anniversary.

They also attended the ceremony in Mojstrana, with Škarja pointing out that a number of factors contributed to the accomplishment, including successful preparation, courage, experience, cooperation and pursuit of the common goal.

Štremfelj reminisced about the feat, saying that he and Zaplotnik congratulated themselves at the top and shed a few tears of joy.

"Resounding cheers from all camps told us everything we needed to know about the collective spirit. We reached the top on behalf of all of us and saved the exhibition from fears of failure so that all our efforts would not have been in vain," said Štremfelj, adding that their joy could not last since one of the members had a fatal accident.

The realisation of what they had achieved sank in later, when they were already back and celebrating in Slovenia. Nowadays, their route is considered the most difficult among eleven established routes. Only the 1984 Bulgarian expedition has succeeded in conquering it as well.

To mark the feat, the museum is also hosting an exhibition featuring items and archives about the expedition and Mount Everest in general, including a journal entry by US chronicler of Himalayan mountaineering expeditions Elizabeth Hawley, describing the 1979 expedition.

The 8,848-metre Mount Everest has been summited by 18 Slovenians, who climbed to the top using three different routes.

Slovenian mountaineers have made a name for themselves among the Himalayas' world records, succeeding in climbing a route that had never been attempted before, women's ascent and ascent without the use of supplemental oxygen as well as the first ski descent from the top of the mountain.

All our stories about mountaineering and Slovenia are here

14 May 2019, 15:59 PM

May 14, 2019

The official opening of the European Song Contest begins tonight with the first of the two semi-finals, which will decide which countries will compete for the winning title in the grand finals this Saturday, May 18th.

Among the 17 entries that will compete for the top 10 that will qualify for the finals tonight are the Slovenian duo (and real life couple) Zala and Gašper. According to betting odds Slovenia is currently ranked seventh to win and eighth to qualify, with Greece, Australia, Iceland and Cyprus topping this semi-final’s betting.

Zala and Gašper offer a downbeat, moody alternative to the usual bright pop that enters Eurovision, with the UK's Popbitch noting its competition rundown that they look like "a brother and sister art collective", adding that “It’s not often that Eurovision tosses out a song that could happily sit on the soundtrack to an indie movie about a millennial’s quarter-life crisis, grappling with an estranged parent’s secret addiction to prescription pain-killers – but Slovenia have made a decent fist of it.”

The duo are not new to musical success, and last year they won the Zlata Piščal Award for best song of the summer in recognition of their debut single “Valovi” (Waves).

However, the pair upset expectations when they won the EMA contest to represent Slovenia, coming second to establishment favou rite Raiven. However, the final decision was based on a pubic vote, where they received 72% of the total, prompting an angry reaction from pop star and previous Eurovision contestant, Lea Sirk. Perhaps uncomfortably, Sirk will be watching Saturday’s final from Slovenia, reporting the county’s point to Tel Aviv

The show starts at 21:00 tonight and will be broadcast by TV SLO 2. The second semi-final will be on Thursday.

 

 

 

14 May 2019, 10:30 AM

STA, 13 May 2019 - The National Assembly passed on Monday legislative changes delaying the next round of mass property appraisal for about a year. Under the government-proposed changes, the appraisal will be completed by the end of March 2020 and not the end of July 2019, as initially planned.

The delay was deemed necessary by the government to allow more time to find consensus about what sort of appraisal model to use in the future.

To allow the extension and prolong the validity of the current system, the government drafted changes to the act on mass appraisal of real estate and the real estate records act, with the National Assembly passing them today.

Slovenia introduced the real estate appraisal system in 2006. After the Constitutional Court raised an issue with parts of the legislation in 2013, it was amended at the beginning of 2018.

The changes define the system more closely and stipulate ways in which the values can be used for tax purposes. The changes also allow the public to participate in the creation of valuation models and allow appeals by owners.

Finance Ministry State Secretary Natalija Kovač Jereb told the MPs before the vote that the government wanted to reach a high level of acceptance of mass appraisal and want to dedicate more time talking to experts and municipalities.

In autumn, a trial appraisal will be conducted and appraisal models will be presented and the final models will take into account the comments from the public.

Coalition parties supported the delay, while the opposition, including the minority government's partner, the Left, expressed disagreement with the delay.

The Democrats (SDS) said that the government had not presented sufficient concrete reasons for the delay, adding that the original legislation must have been drafted poorly.

All our stories on property in Slovenia are here

13 May 2019, 15:56 PM

May 13, 2019

In March 1938 a small stream called Nevljica was being regulated and a bridge was planned to be built across it at Nevlje, near Kamnik. Mayor Nande Novak supervised the works at the construction site, when one day the workers complained that they’d hit an obstacle – tree stumps, they said.

The mayor looked at the “stumps” and recognized them as bones but had no idea what kind of creature they once belonged to. He stopped the works and sought advice from Josip Sadnikar in Kamnik.

Josip NIkolaj Sadnikar (1863-1953), a veterinarian by profession, was an enthusiastic collector of antiquities since his years in high school. In the “stumps” that were brought to him he recognized an extinct mammal, a mammoth, which had died about 20,000 years ago.

Sadnikar informed the museum workers about the finding, who immediately began with excavations. The digging lasted for about two weeks in an area of about 180 square meters, and resulted in the finding of nearly an entire skeleton of an exceptionally large male mammoth, a tusk measuring 2.7 meters in length.

The mammoth, 40 years old when it died, was most probably killed by Stone Age hunters, who also left behind some of the tools and probably broke into the skull of the animal to get at the soft tissue inside in search for food, which is why the skeleton is missing some skull bone.  

Although findings of tusks and parts of mammoth bones are relatively common, whole skeletons are not. The mammoth’s bones are now exhibited in the Slovenian Museum of Natural History.

Mammoths, however, were not the oldest elephant-like creatures whose presence has been confirmed by excavations. Since the late 19 century, several findings have proven that several much older species stomped these lands, known under a common name of mastodon.

In 1871 a whole mastodon skeleton was found near Ljutomer, but it fell apart during excavation. In 1888 parts of a head and skeleton of the species called Tapirus hungaricus H. v Mayer were found in Šaleška dolina.

In 1890 a fragment of a tooth was found in Velenje, and other small fragments were also found near Radgona, and near Slovenska Bistrica in 1942. After the war, fragments of mastodon were also found near Slovenske Gorice and Čentibske Gorice, and finally, in 1964 in Škale near Velenje, where four mastodon sites were discovered.

The most interesting one consists of a skull with teeth and two tusks. The left tusk is 2.3 meters long and is completely preserved, including its root still stuck in the bone of the head.

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Photo: I. Ozebek
 

From the findings they have identified three specimens of two different species of mastodon, who lived approximately 1.7 million years ago.

Mastodon’s lived much earlier than mammoths, they had a longer, stocky body and head and forward pointed tusks.

Mastodon remains are exhibited at Velenje Museum.

Source: Kladnik Darinka: Slovenija v zgodbah, Cankarjeva založba, Ljubljana, 2015

13 May 2019, 09:11 AM

Inspired by the renovation of Novo mesto’s Main Square, we took a trip the archives to pull out some postcards of the same place in years gone by, as well as the city in general.

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Postcard from 1899

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Postcard from 1910

Postcard_of_Novo_mesto_1917_(2).jpg

Postcard from 1917

Postcard_of_Novo_mesto_1918.jpg

Postcard from 1918

Postcard_of_Glavni_trg,_Novo_Mesto_1919.jpg

Postcard from 1919

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Postcard from 1910s

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Postcard from 1919

Postcard_of_Novo_mesto_1928.jpg

Postcard from 1928

Postcard_of_Novo_mesto_1930s.jpg

Postcard from 1930s

Postcard_of_Novo_mesto_(13).jpg

Undated postcard

Postcard_of_Novo_mesto_(21).jpg

Undated postcard

Postcard_of_Novo_mesto_1945.jpg

Postcard 1945

Postcard_of_Novo_mesto_1966.jpg

Postcard, 1966

All our posts with old photos can be found here

Page 6 of 65

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