STA, 12 December 2018 - After heated reactions in Spain to the Catalan leader suggesting Catalonia take the Slovenian path to independence, the issue is expected to be discussed as the Slovenian Foreign Ministry hosts the Spanish ambassador for what it has termed a regular dialogue on Thursday.
After visiting Slovenia last week, Catalan President Quim Torra expressed his support for the "Slovenian way" and determination in a speech in Brussels, a statement that provoked heated reactions in Madrid.
"He has obviously forgotten the many dead and wounded in Slovenia," Isabel Calaa, the education minister and the spokesperson for the Spanish government, said.
The newspaper Delo has reported that the Slovenian Foreign Ministry has invited Spanish ambassador to the country for a meeting today so as to explain to him that Slovenia's independence was not an act of violence but that Slovenia defended itself from aggression.
However, the Foreign Ministry told the STA today Spanish Ambassador Jose Luis de la Pena Vela would be meeting the head of the EU Affairs Directorate David Brozina on Thursday for what was previously scheduled as "regular diplomatic dialogue and exchange of views on topical matters as is common practice between friendly countries and partners in the EU".
Foreign Ministry State Secretary Simona Leskovar said at today session of the parliamentary Foreign Policy Committee as she answered a question from an MP that Slovenia's position to the Catalan issue had been consistent and transparent.
From the historical aspect and in the light of its own experience, Slovenia advocates the right of nations to self-determination, which must be implemented lawfully and in accordance with democratic standards, she added.
According to Leskovar, Slovenia has been stressing regarding Catalonia that a solution should be found in a peaceful way, in dialogue and efforts for co-existence.
Slovenia respects the territorial integrity and does not interfere in internal affairs of other countries and in principle it does not take positions on these internal processes, she added.
Torra visited Slovenia last week at the invitation of MEP Ivo Vajgl and former Slovenian President Milan Kučan. He was also received by President Borut Pahor and Speaker Dejan Židan for informal meetings.
Kučan issued a written statement today in which he says that the issue of Catalonia is a political issue that can only be resolved by political means, through open, tolerant and well-argued dialogue between Barcelona and Madrid. He also said that the Slovenian path of peaceful exercise of the right to self-determination may serve as a model, something that was discussed with Torra last week.
However, Kučan said that the interpretation that Slovenia forced its way to independence by violence was not realistic and indicated ignorance of facts.