What follows is a weekly review of events involving Slovenia, as prepared by the STA.
FRIDAY, 19 November
LJUBLJANA - The government endorsed a bill on additional measures for curbing the consequences of epidemic, envisaging special one-off payments for the most vulnerable such as pensioners, old farmers without pension and people with disabilities, and fresh stimulus measures for business.
LJUBLJANA - The government proposed a compensation scheme for those who have suffered serious health damage as a result of a Covid-19 vaccine, a step Health Minister Janez Poklukar said was key to maintaining confidence in the vaccines. Compensation of EUR 60,000 would be paid to those who suffer a serious and permanent reduction in their vital functions after vaccination.
LJUBLJANA - The State Prosecution Council welcomed the government's decision to refer the council's pick of the pair of candidates for delegated prosecutors to the European Public Prosecutor's Office (EPPO). Both the council and experts said such an act cannot be temporary. The European Commission said the appointment was a step in the right direction.
BRUSSELS, Belgium - The EU's General Affairs Council endorsed conclusions highlighting the strategic importance of water, a move hailed by Slovenia as a landmark in water diplomacy and a major achievement of the Slovenian EU presidency.
LJUBLJANA - The MPs representing the Italian and Hungarian minority tabled legislation that would raise the language requirement for teachers and other staff working in bilingual schools and kindergartens.
SATURDAY, 20 November
LJUBLJANA - Simona Kustec stayed on as minister of education after a motion of no confidence in her was voted down following more than 14 hours of debate during which the opposition alleged that her management of the portfolio has been disastrous, especially when it comes to dealing with Covid-19 at school, and Kustec framing the vote as an attempt to silence women in politics.
LJUBLJANA - Hit the Road, a family road trip movie by Iranian director Panah Panahi, won the Kingfisher Award, the main award handed out at the Ljubljana International Film Festival. Panahi's debut feature is a multi-layered portrait of an Iranian family and Iranian society at large set in a road trip through north-western Iran.
SUNDAY, 21 November
LJUBLJANA - Interior Minister Aleš Hojs rejected allegations about the police organisation changes being an attempt to politicise the force. Hojs sees the new law as the first step towards a more professional police that would reduce any political interference, whereas the opposition maintains the opposite.
MONDAY, 22 November
LJUBLJANA - Marjan Dikaučič remained justice minister after 42 MPs voted in favour of a motion of no confidence, four short of the required majority. He was endorsed by 28 MPs as several deputy groups, including the junior coalition NSi, abstained.
OTOČEC - A plaque commemorating the Slovenian-Croatian bilateral meetings and cooperation, celebrating the 30th anniversary of independence of both countries was unveiled with prime ministers Janez Janša and Andrej Plenković stressing the importance of cooperation and friendly relations.
LJUBLJANA - The government decided to lend Croatia 40,950 doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine against Covid-19 in response to the neighbouring country's request for 40,000 doses.
LJUBLJANA - President Borut Pahor congratulated Bulgarian President Rumen Radev on his re-election. The presidents also discussed the Covid-19 pandemic, efforts by both Slovenia and Bulgaria to raise vaccination rates, and potential further steps in the search for a compromise solution on Bulgaria's blockade of North Macedonia's EU accession talks.
VIENNA, Austria - Foreign Minister Anže Logar said Belarus should remain high on the agenda of the EU and the international community as he condemned the Belarus regime and expressed support for democratisation of the country at a conference in Vienna.
LJUBLJANA - The Ljubljana Local Court dismissed a case against author and comedian Andrej Rozman Roza over his involvement in a protest reading of the Constitution in front of Parliament House in June 2020. The court said that this was minor offence that did not endanger anyone.
LJUBLJANA - Igor Samobor, the director of Ljubljana's SNG Drama theatre, resigned due to what he described as government foot-dragging over the badly needed renovation of the building of Slovenia's largest theatre. Culture Minister Vasko Simoniti denied culpability saying the government wanted the project to be transparent.
LJUBLJANA - The retrial in the infamous sawn-off hand insurance fraud case saw Julija Adlešič - the woman whose hand was sawn off - her partner Sebastien Abramov, and his parents all pleading guilty and receiving prison sentences. Adlešič and Abramov will spend 19 and 29 months in prison, respectively. Both have already served most of their sentences in custody.
TUESDAY, 23 November
MURSKA SOBOTA - The government toured the north-easternmost region of Pomurje, discussing various projects, including in agriculture, the leading industry in the area, as well as efforts to convince young people to stay in the region. Apart from visiting companies in the region, PM Janez Janša met representatives of the Hungarian minority in Pomurje and visited the Murska Sobota diocese of the Evangelical Church in Slovenia where he met Bishop Leon Novak.
LJUBLJANA - Health Minister Janez Poklukar and the head of the Medical Chamber Bojana Beović warned about the possibility of the fifth wave of Covid infections, with Poklukar saying he thought that another wave could emerge in February next year as a result of an insufficient vaccination rate. Beović said that the Covid pass mandate could be amended to make booster doses mandatory.
LJUBLJANA - Interior Minister Aleš Hojs hosted a meeting of the ATLAS Commanders Forum, attended by representatives of the special police units from the EU member states. Hojs said that terrorism was placed high on the EU priority list and that the role of ATLAS network was important as well.
STRASBOURG, France - Foreign Minister Anže Logar raised concern about the situation in Bosnia-Herzegovina as he addressed the European Parliament on Tuesday evening. Logar, who took part in the debate on behalf of the Council of the EU, called on the country's political leaders to give up provocative and divisive rhetoric and actions
LONDON, UK - Slovenian artist Jasmina Cibic won the 2021 Jarman Award handed out by Film London, worth EUR 10,000. The jury highlighted her projects NADA and The Gift, which was recently screened at the London Film Festival.
WEDNESDAY, 24 November
LUXEMBOURG, Luxembourg - The College of the European Public Prosecutor's Office appointed Tanja Frank Eler and Matej Oštir as Slovenia's European delegated prosecutors for five-year terms, same as all the other delegated prosecutors. Meanwhile, the Justice Ministry put forward amendments to the act on the public prosecution that would give the government greater say in the appointment of Slovenian prosecutors, which the opposition labelled as as yet another attempt by the government at undermining the rule of law and subordinating all social subsystems.
LJUBLJANA - Hosting his Polish counterpart Mateusz Morawiecki, Prime Minister Janez Janša pledged Slovenia's support for Poland in light of the migrant crisis on the Polish-Belarusian border. He said the EU should fund all measures to protect the bloc's external borders, arguing that physical barriers at the borders have proved to be effective in preventing illegal migration and violence.
STRASBOURG, France - The European Parliament conducted a debate on fundamental rights and the rule of law in Slovenia. MEPs acknowledged there have been positive steps made recently, but they also criticised the government for delays, in particular in the appointment of European delegated prosecutors.
LJUBLJANA - The parliament passed an opposition amendment to the act on emergency measures in healthcare, introducing financial compensation for the self-employed, partners in companies and farmers in the event of a quarantine order due to Covid-19 or subsequent childcare obligations.
LJUBLJANA - Prime Minister Janez Janša reiterated his call for vaccination against Covid-19 as he indicated in an interview with the Catholic Radio Ognjišče that a tightening of restrictions was not in the cards at present.
LJUBLJANA - Police dealt with 8,144 instances of illegal crossing of the border in the first ten months of 2021, nearly 39% fewer than in the same period last year. The most frequently processed illegal migrants were from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh, who accounted for almost half of the total number.
THURSDAY, 25 November
LJUBLJANA - The daily number of new coronavirus cases had been dropping in Slovenia in the past week with the latest figures available showing 2,668 new daily coronavirus infections, about a thousand fewer than a week ago. However, the situation in hospitals remains critical with the number of ICU cases hitting a record 286.
LJUBLJANA/PHNOM PENH, Cambodia - Prime Minister Janez Janša called for stronger cooperation in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic as he addressed the Asian-European Meeting (ASEM) by videolink. He said this was crucial for an effective response to crises.
BRUSSELS, Belgium - EU ministers in charge of competitiveness clinched a political agreement on two key digital acts - on digital markets and services at a session chaired by Slovenian Economy Minister Zdravko Počivalšek and Digital Transformation Minister Mark Boris Andrijanič. Počivalšek lauded the agreement an important milestone on the path to create a more open and competitive digital market.
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly endorsed the government's proposal to raise the cap on state budget expenditure for this year by EUR 670 million to nearly EUR 15 billion. The government said the rise was to allow the financing of Covid-19 response measures to continue undisrupted, but the centre-left opposition argued the government had lost a grip on public finances.
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly unanimously passed an act prohibiting the sale of certain plastic products, including disposable products, with the aim of reducing the quantity of discarded packaging and, consequently, improving public health.
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly backed a proposal for a ban on hydraulic fracturing in Slovenia, tabled by three centre-left opposition parties, on first reading in what is the fifth attempt to thwart British company Ascent Resources's fracking plans in the north-eastern Prekmurje region.
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly failed to muster the majority needed to pass a declaration to support the European Parliament's 2009 resolution on European conscience and totalitarianism in what was the fifth attempt by the ruling Democratic Party (SDS) to endorse the resolution condemning all totalitarian regimes.
LJUBLJANA - The government adopted amendments to the medical services act that facilitate licensing of doctors, transfer the jurisdiction of professional exams to the Medical Chamber and simplify hiring of foreign doctors with regard to Slovenian language skills.
LJUBLJANA - Mercator, Slovenia's largest retailer, recovered from last year's deep loss as it posted a net profit of EUR 12.6 million for the first nine months of the year. Sales revenue was up by almost a percent to EUR 1.63 billion, shows the group's earnings report.