The Slovenia Times

Slovenia to participate in mission to train Ukrainian troops

Daily news

Brussels, 14 November - Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon announced that Slovenia would participate in a EU mission to train Ukrainian soldiers as she arrived for a session of the Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels on Monday. Fajon also said she would remind her counterparts at the session that the Western Balkans must not be forgotten.

The EU foreign ministers will discuss today further assistance to Ukraine in light of the Russian aggression, and it is expected that they will officially launch a mission to train Ukrainian soldiers on the territory of the EU.

European Union Assistance Mission Ukraine (EUMAM) will provide training at the individual level and at the level of units up to the size of a brigade. Training of special units is also planned.

Fajon told the STA as she arrived for the session that Slovenia would participate in the mission, but that it would not host it, as training would most probably be conducted in Poland and other countries.

"We can probably participate in the training with our representatives of some sort. This is not about sending some military equipment, but truly about assistance," she said.

Also on the agenda of the session is the Western Balkans. "It will be important that I remind the ministers again and convince them that we must not forget the countries of the Western Balkans," the foreign minister said.

"The situation is tense also in light of the war in Ukraine and this is why the EU must grant Bosnia and Herzegovina candidate status by the end of the year. This an important symbolic message to the country," she added

Regarding the granting of the status, Fajon said Slovenia would be cautious until the last green light was given. "I have the feeling that support is increasing, that there are few countries that still express reservations."

The minister noted that Bosnia and Herzegovina must show that it was sincere in its effort to continue on the path to join the EU. A new government is being formed after the elections, and the country must continue passing the required laws, she added.

Fajon also pointed out that the situation in Kosovo must not be further escalated. "The situation is worrying; it's calm at the moment, but this will not necessarily last long."

The minister announced that Slovenia would be very intensively and directly involved in Kosovo, as well as in talks with Serbia, and that the same was true when it comes to the visa-free regime for residents of Kosovo.

Fajon noted that a special envoy for the Western Balkans had been appointed in the Foreign Ministry, who intensively cooperated with other envoys in the region.

Ahead of the session, the EU ministers met with the Belarusian opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya. Fajon announced before the meeting that she would reiterate Slovenia's support for the Belarusian opposition, the public and civil society.


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