Berlin – Russia’s invasion of Ukraine topped the agenda as Foreign Minister Anže Logar was hosted by his German counterpart Annalena Baerbock in Berlin on Monday. The pair agreed that EU values are being defended in Ukraine.
Addressing a joint press conference, Baerbock noted the united Germany and independent Slovenia established diplomatic ties 30 years ago, since when Europe walked the same path, the path of peace, which she said was put to a grave test now.
Russia’s conduct in Ukraine is a danger not only to Europe, but to the whole world, said Baerbock, who expects the UN General Assembly in the coming days to condemn Russian aggression and international isolation of the Russian leadership.
Logar hailed Europe’s unity to penalise Russia. “We can be proud we play an active part in providing security and taking decisions,” he said.
In Ukraine the fight is being fought to preserve the values and order as we know it and the multilateral system, he said.
The two ministers condemned President Vladimir Putin’s threats to use nuclear weapons. “Even if they may seem insane”, the threats must be taken seriously, said Logar, adding that irrationality of some leaders had been underestimated for too long, hence only bad solutions were left to choose between.
Logar told Baerbock about the initiative by Slovenian and Polish prime ministers for Ukraine to be admitted to the EU, but Baerbock said the EU’s door was always open yet accession was not possible within months.
The ministers also pledged support for refugees where Logar did not answer directly a question about a hierarchy of refugees in Slovenia as suggested by a government tweet, subsequently deleted, that described Ukrainian refugees as culturally more suitable. “Slovenia supports the burden of the refugee wave, judge us by out actions,” he said.
Logar hailed Berlin’s decision to substantially increase defence spending, announced by Chancellor Olaf Scholz in the Bundestag on Sunday.
“Yesterday’s decisions in the Budestag make me feel safer,” he said, adding that investment in Germany’s security was investment into the security of the whole Europe.
The two foreign ministers also talked about bilateral relations and the Western Balkans with Logar expressing support for the Berlin Process.
Bilateral ties-wise, Baerbock emphasized cooperation in working towards climate goals and Logar noted that Germany is Slovenia’s leading trading partner partner.
The countries are strategic partners and an action plan of cooperation until 2024 is being drafted. Logar invited his German colleague to visit Slovenia for the signing once the document is fully agreed.