Slovene Bloc Remains Until New Circumstances

The conference does not make any sense if an agreement is not achieved on the manner of the mediation for solving the border dispute.

Slovenia believes that holding the intergovernmental conference on Croatian European Union accession, scheduled for March 27, does not make any sense if agreement is not achieved on the manner of the mediation process for solving the border dispute between Croatia and Slovenia and the continuation of Croatian accession talks, said Slovene Foreign Affairs Minster Samuel Zbogar.

Slovenes would explain why opening chapters was not possible

– The intergovernmental conference on accession is in the hands of the Czech Presidency. I believe that such a conference would not make sense if none of the chapters can be closed or opened, however, if the Czech Republic decides it will take place, and then it will – Zbogar said.

When asked if this would mean certain pressure for Slovenia, the foreign minister replied:

– No, I don’t believe it would, we would explain at that conference why opening chapters was not possible

– He added that Slovene Prime Minister Borut Pahor has sent a letter to Presiding of the European Council, Czech Prime Minister Mirek Topolanek, explaining the reasons why he wants the conference to be postponed.

Is the Czech Republic pressuring Slovenia?

– The Czech Presidency does not want to postpone the accession conference yet, which many people interpret as pressure on Slovenia.

– We are considering the option of postponement only under the assumption that concrete results would be achieved soon. This must not be just sheer postponement – deputy Czech PM Alexandr Vondra said last week in Strasbourg.

Zbogar reiterated that the Slovene bloc would remain “until the circumstances change” which led to the veto in the first place.

Talks between EU expansion commissioner Olli Rehn and foreign ministers of Croatia and Slovenia will continue on Tuesday.

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