The Slovenia Times

Slovenia's Ten-Day War



There were 22,300 JNA and 16,000 Territorial Defence (TO) personnel stationed in Slovenia. During the war the number of JNA personnel increased to 35,200. Opposing them were the 10,000 active and reservist members of the Slovenian police force. Obviously the JNA had an absolute advantage in weapons, personnel, and armoured units as well as total air supremacy. Nevertheless, on June 26th, when the first armoured units of the Rijeka Corps set off towards the Italian border crossings they were met by unarmed civilians who reacted decisively against the aggression and did their best to thwart the advancing troops. This attitude quickly spread all across Slovenia. At 1430 hrs., a JNA officer in Divaca fired the first shot as a warning to the Slovenian demonstrators. The war for Slovenia started on Thursday, June 27th, at 0115 when a JNA anti-aircraft armoured battery crossed the Republic's border near Metlika. On Friday, June 28th, the following order was issued: "At all locations where RS (Republic of Slovenia) armed forces have the tactical advantage, offensive actions against enemy units and facilities will be carried out. The enemy will be summoned to surrender, the shortest possible deadline for surrender given and action taken using all available weapons. While in action, the necessary arrangements will be made to evacuate and protect civilians". At 2100 hrs., a cease-fire was announced by the JNA since the situation was rapidly deteriorating for the surrounded JNA units. During the night, Slovenian representatives met with three Ministers of Foreign Affairs from the European Community and the President of the Federal Executive Council in Zagreb, and on Saturday, June 29th, they reached an agreement on the cessation of hostilities. However, it was so unclear that it was never implemented. That evening the Slovenian Assembly met and opted for a peaceful solution to the crisis that did not jeopardise Slovenian independence. On Sunday, June 30th, the fighting resumed and on Tuesday, July 2nd, the most decisive battles of the war for Slovenia began. The JNA agreed to a cease-fire on Wednesday, July 3rd, and by Thursday, July 4th, the war had been won. All the border crossings were in Slovenian hands and the JNA units were withdrawing to their barracks in Croatia. On Sunday, July 7th, representatives of Slovenia, the Socialist Federative Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY) and the European Community met on the Brioni islands, where they adopted the Brioni Declaration, which established a three-month moratorium on Slovenian independence activities. However, the Slovenian militia retained full sovereignty over Slovenian territory. As a result, the SFRY Presidency reached a decision on July 18th to withdraw all JNA arms, equipment and personnel from Slovenia within three months. The last soldiers left Slovenia from the port of Koper during the night of October 25th.


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