Slovenia opens embassy in Ethiopia
Slovenia has opened an embassy in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa. The second residential Slovenian embassy in Africa after Cairo will be headed by a charge d'affaires until an ambassador is appointed.
By opening a new residential embassy on the continent, Slovenia seeks to strengthen relations with Ethiopia and countries in the broader region, the Foreign Ministry said.
The embassy in Addis Ababa, which is a diplomatic centre of Africa, where the seat of the African Union is located, is expected to be accredited for other countries in the region too.
Slovenia has been striving to bolster its presence in Africa for a long time, but it was not possible to open a new embassy earlier due to the unpredictable security situation.
The decision to open the embassy was made after tensions in Ethiopia have calmed down and the bilateral relations have recently improved. Foreign Minister Tanja Fajon visited the Ethiopian capital in April.
Fajon said on the occasion that she wanted the countries to "strengthen bilateral cooperation, which is one of the reasons why Slovenia is opening the embassy in Addis Ababa. Ethiopia plays an important role in ensuring stability in the region."
It is hoped that the diplomatic outpost will help Slovenia strengthen political, economic and cultural cooperation with Ethiopia and countries in the broader region, and improve the provision of consular assistance to Slovenian citizens.
Slovenia will now be more actively involved in shaping the EU's policy towards the African Union, which will help better understand the situation in African countries that indirectly has a major impact on Europe, the ministry said.
Having shrunk its diplomatic network in the aftermath of the 2009 financial crisis, Slovenia has in recent years sought to expand its diplomatic presence. It opened an embassy Seoul in June 2021 and reopened the embassy in Dublin in July of the same year.