U.S. Department of State Country Report on Human Rights Practices 1997 - Slovenia
|Publisher||United States Department of State|
|Publication Date||30 January 1998|
|Cite as||United States Department of State, U.S. Department of State Country Report on Human Rights Practices 1997 - Slovenia, 30 January 1998, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/3ae6aa1c8.html [accessed 23 September 2014]|
Released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, January 30, 1998.
SLOVENIASlovenia is a parliamentary democracy and constitutional republic. Power is shared between a directly elected President, a Prime Minister, and a bicameral legislature. Since Slovenia's independence from the former Yugoslavia in 1991, free, fair, and open elections have characterized the political system. In 1997 elections were held to elect both a president and representatives to Parliament's upper house. Constitutional provisions for an independent judiciary are respected by the Government in practice. The police are under the effective civilian control of the Ministry of the Interior. By law the armed forces do not exercise civil police functions. The country has made steady progress toward developing a market economy. The first phase of privatization is now complete, and sales of remaining large state holdings are planned for 1998. Trade has been diversified toward the West and the growing markets of central and eastern Europe. Manufacturing accounted for most employment, with machinery and other manufactured products comprising the major exports. Labor force surveys put unemployment at approximately 7 percent, but registration for unemployment assistance is twice that number. Inflation has remained just below double-digit levels. Real gross national product grew 2.9 percent in 1997. The currency is stable, fully convertible, and backed by substantial reserves. The economy provides citizens with a good standard of living. The Government respects the human rights of its citizens, and the law and judiciary provide adequate means of dealing with individual instances of abuse. An Ombudsman deals with human rights problems, including citizenship cases. Minorities are generally treated fairly in practice as well as in law. However, 5,000 to 10,000 non-Slovene (former Yugoslav) residents are without legal residency status due to the Government's slow processing of their applications for Slovene citizenship.