Slovenia

Cluster Munition Ban Policy

Last updated: 09 July 2018

Summary: State Party Slovenia was among the first 30 ratifications to trigger the convention’s entry into force on 1 August 2010. Slovenia has declared existing legislation as sufficient to enforce its implementation of the convention. It has participated in almost every meeting of the convention and has condemned new use of cluster munitions. Slovenia voted in favor of a key United Nations (UN) resolution on the convention in December 2017.

Slovenia has not used, produced, or exported cluster munitions. In 2012, it declared the completion of destruction of a stockpile of 1,080 cluster munitions containing 52,920 submunitions, but in 2017, discovered that 41,825 of the submunitions that Slovenia transferred years ago for the purposes of destruction still had not been destroyed. Those stocks were subsequently destroyed by April 2018 and Slovenia is not retaining any cluster munitions for training or research.

Policy

The Republic of Sloveniasigned the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 3 December 2008 and ratified on 19 August 2009. It was among the first 30 ratifications to trigger the convention’s entry into force on 1 August 2010.

Slovenia has declared its ratification legislation and relevant sections of its Criminal Code as sufficient national measures to implement the convention.[1] Slovenian officials have said that according to the country’s constitution, international treaties are implemented directly.[2]

Slovenia submitted its initial Article 7 transparency report for the Convention on Cluster Munitions on 26 January 2011 and has provided updated reports annually, most recently in June 2018.[3]

Slovenia actively engaged in the Oslo Process that led to the creation of the convention and enacted legislative measures on cluster munitions prior to the conclusion of the process. In July 2007, it adopted a declaration calling on the government to support all international efforts to conclude an international instrument prohibiting cluster munitions and to consider national measures, including appropriate legislation to ban cluster munitions.[4]

Slovenia has engaged fully in the work of the Convention on Cluster Munitions since 2008. It has attended nearly all of the convention’s Meetings of States Parties, most recently the Seventh Meeting of States Parties in Geneva, Switzerland in September 2017. Slovenia participated in the convention’s First Review Conference in 2015, intersessional meetings in 2011–2015, and regional workshops on cluster munitions.

In December 2017, Slovenia voted in favor of a UN General Assembly (UNGA) resolution promoting implementation and universalization of the Convention on Cluster Munitions.[5] It voted in favor of previous UNGA resolutions supporting the convention in 2015 and 2016.

Slovenia has condemned the use of cluster munitions in Libya, Syria, South Sudan, and Ukraine, which it described as “a grave violation of international humanitarian law.”[6] In 2014, it called on all parties to the conflict in Ukraine to not use cluster munitions.[7]

Slovenia has voted in favor of UN General Assembly (UNGA) and UN Human Rights Council (HRC) resolutions expressing outrage at the use of cluster munitions in Syria, most recently in December 2017 and March 2018, respectively.[8]

Slovenia dedicates substantial financial, political, and in-kind support to ITF Enhancing Human Security, a non-profit, humanitarian organization founded by the government of Slovenia in 1998, originally to help Bosnia and Herzegovina, and later other countries affected by landmines and/or contaminated by cluster munition remnants.[9]

Interpretive issues

Slovenia has elaborated its views on important issues relating to the interpretation and implementation of the convention.

In 2011, Slovenia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs said that “Slovenia will not participate in any joint military operation with non-States Parties [sic] to the Convention involving the use of cluster munitions.”[10] The minister also reaffirmed Slovenia’s view that transit and foreign stockpiling of cluster munitions are expressly prohibited under the convention and that it considers such activities “illegal on the territory of the Republic of Slovenia.”[11]

In 2012, Slovenia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs informed the Monitor that it “has no intention of allowing investment in cluster munition production.”[12] In April 2013, an official elaborated Slovenia’s view that the Convention on Cluster Munitions prohibits investment and financing of cluster munitions under Article 1(1)(c), and as such, the government will not permit investment or financing of cluster munition production on Slovenian territory. The representative stated that this would also apply to Slovenian companies with headquarters outside of Slovenia and to Slovenian nationals with permanent residence abroad.[13]

Slovenia is a State Party to the Mine Ban Treaty. It is also party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons.

Use, production, and transfer

Slovenia has declared that it has not produced cluster munitions.[14] Slovenia is not known to have used or exported cluster munitions. Slovenia imported or received cluster munitions in the past and once possessed a stockpile of PAT-794 Long-Range/Base Bleed (LR/BB) 155mm artillery projectiles of an unknown country of origin.[15]

Stockpile destruction

Under Article 3 of the Convention on Cluster Munitions, Slovenia was required to ensure the destruction of all its stockpiled cluster munitions as soon as possible, but not later than 1 August 2018.

In 2012, Slovenia reported that on 29 July 2011 it completed the destruction of its stockpile comprised of 1,080 PAT-794 projectiles and 52,920 submunitions.[16] The stocks were transferred to implementing partner countryBulgaria, where they were reportedly destroyed by the company MAXAM Bulgaria AD in the town of Gabrovo.[17]

However, in May 2017, Bulgaria provided an updated report for the convention that found that 41,825 PAT-794 submunitions it had received from Slovenia for the purposes of stockpile destruction were still not destroyed and in the possession of the company EXPAL Bulgaria.[18]

ASlovenian delegation visited implementing partner countryBulgaria in January 2017 to inspect the transferred cluster munition stocks still awaiting destruction. Slovenia informed States Parties in September 2017 that it was “doing everything in its power to ensure the irreversible destruction of the remaining elements of the munitions before the deadline.”[19]

On 6 June 2018, Slovenia reported that the cluster munitions in Bulgaria had been destroyed according to written reports from the service provider (EXPAL Bulgaria) and on-site inspections.[20] According to Slovenia’s report, “all stocks of cluster munitions are effectively and irreversibly destroyed.” Implementing partner countryBulgaria’s June 2018 Article 7 transparency report confirmed that the “Slovenian submunitions, declared in previous periods, have been destroyed.”[21]

Slovenia is not retaining any cluster munitions for training or research purposes.[22]



[1] The ratification law was adopted on 15 July 2009. Under national implementation measures, Slovenia also listed Article 307 of the Criminal Code, which addresses “Illegal Manufacture of and Trade in Weapons or Explosive Materials.” Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form A, 26 January 2011.

[2] Email from Jurij Žerovec, Security Policy Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 13 June 2011. Draft legislation to specifically implement the convention was submitted to parliament in 2010, but not adopted as it was found to be unnecessary. “Draft law banning the manufacture, use, and sale of cluster munitions” (“Predlog zakona o prepovedi priozvodnje, prodaje in uporabe kasetnega streliva”), No. 213-05/10-001/1175-V, 15 July 2010; and email from Eva Veble, DanChurchAid, 30 July 2010.

[3] Email from Jelka Travnik, Deputy Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Slovenia to UNOG in Geneva, to Mary Wareham, Advocacy Director, Human Rights Watch (HRW), 11 June 2018. The initial report covers calendar year 2010, while the 2012 report covers the period from 27 January 2011 to 1 January 2012. The transparency reports provided since 2013 cover the previous calendar year.

[4] For details on Slovenia’s cluster munition policy and practice up to early 2009, see HRW and Landmine Action, Banning Cluster Munitions: Government Policy and Practice (Ottawa: Mines Action Canada, May 2009), pp. 152–153.

[5] “Implementation of the Convention on Cluster Munitions,” UNGA Resolution 72/54, 4 December 2017.

[6] Ibid.; statement of Slovenia, Convention on Cluster Munitions Third Meeting of States Parties, Oslo, 11 September 2012; statement of Slovenia, Convention on Cluster Munitions Fifth Meeting of States Parties, San José, 2 September 2014; and statement of Slovenia, Convention on Cluster Munitions Seventh Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 4 September 2017.

[7] Statement of Slovenia, Convention on Cluster Munitions Fifth Meeting of States Parties, San José, 2 September 2014.

[8] “Situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic,” UNGA Resolution 72/191.Slovenia voted in favor of similar resolutions in 2013–2016. See also, “The human rights situation in the Syrian Arab Republic,” HRC Resolution 37/29, 23 March 2018.

[9] It was previously called the International Trust Fund for Demining and Mine Victims Assistance. See their website for further information.

[10] Letter from Samuel Žbogar, Minister of Foreign Affairs, to Mary Wareham, HRW, 9 May 2011. The minister stated: “Allow me to stress that Slovenia will not participate in any joint military operation with non-States Parties [sic] to the Convention involving the use of cluster munitions.”

[11] The minister stated, “As the Convention also includes the prohibition on transit and stockpiling of cluster munitions by third countries on the territory of States Parties, we consider such activities illegal on the territory of the Republic of Slovenia.” Letter from Minister of Foreign Affairs Žbogar, to Mary Wareham, HRW, 9 May 2011.

[12] Letter from Karl Erjavec, Minister of Foreign Affairs, to Mary Wareham, HRW, 14 March 2012.

[13] Cluster Munition Coalition (CMC) meeting with Jurij Žerovec, Deputy Head, Permanent Mission of Slovenia to the UN in Geneva, Geneva, 17 April 2013.

[14] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form E, 26 January 2011. Slovenia has stated that it has never produced cluster munitions or their components. Letter from Minister of Foreign Affairs Žbogar, 20 April 2010; and letter from Minister of Foreign Affairs Žbogar, to Mary Wareham, HRW, 9 May 2011.

[15] Knowledgeable sources have speculated that the PAT-794 was produced by the ZVS company from Slovakia and contains 49 M85 dual-purpose improved conventional munition (DPICM) submunitions.

[16] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 30 March 2012; and statement of Slovenia, Convention on Cluster Munitions Second Meeting of States Parties, Beirut, 14 September 2011.

[17] It reported that the “components of cluster munitions had been incinerated, metallic components were dismantled, disabled and disposed of recycling as metallic waste.” Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 30 March 2012.

[18] In the report, Bulgaria stated that the “submunitions are parts of artillery shells, previously owned by the Armed forces of the Republic of Slovenia, which were decomposed in 2011. The submunitions were not destroyed due to wrong interpretation of the CCM [Convention on Cluster Munitions] provisions by the private company. The submunitions are in process of destruction (41 825 left out of 52 900 found).” Bulgaria, Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 18 May 2016; and Bulgaria, Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 29 June 2017.

[19] Statement of Slovenia, Convention on Cluster Munitions Seventh Meeting of States Parties, Geneva, 4 September 2017.

[20] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 6 June 2018. See also, email from Jelka Travnik, Deputy Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Slovenia to the UN in Geneva, to Mary Wareham, HRW, 11 June 2018.

[21] Bulgaria, Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Report, Form B, 27 June 2018.

[22] Convention on Cluster Munitions Article 7 Reports, Forms B and C, 20 April 2015, and 31 March 2014.


Mine Ban Policy

Last updated: 18 December 2019

Policy

The Republic of Slovenia signed the Mine Ban Treaty on 3 December 1997 and ratified it on 27 October 1998, becoming a State Party on 1 April 1999. Legislation to enforce the antipersonnel mine prohibition domestically was passed in December 1998 and April 1999.

Slovenia has been a regular attendee of meetings of the treaty, including the Third Review Conference in Maputo in June 2014. More recently, Slovenia attended the Seventeenth Meeting of States Parties in Geneva in November 2018, where it provided a statement on victim assistance. Slovenia also attended the intersessional meetings in Geneva in May 2019. Slovenia consistently submits annual Article 7 transparency reports.

Slovenia served as co-rapporteur and then co-chair of the Standing Committee on Mine Clearance (2004–2006) and the General Status and Operation of the Convention (2008–2010). Slovenia was President of the Twelfth Meeting of States Parties in 2012 under the leadership of Ambassador Matjaž Kovačič.

Slovenia is party to the Convention on Conventional Weapons and its Amended Protocol II on landmines and Protocol V on explosive remnants of war. Slovenia is also party to the Convention on Cluster Munitions.

Production, use, stockpiling, and transfer

Mine clearance in Slovenia was completed in the early 1990s; there are now no known mined areas in Slovenia. Slovenia is contaminated by unexploded ordnance from World War I, World War II, and the independence war of 1991.

Slovenia never produced, imported, or exported antipersonnel mines. It inherited its stockpile of antipersonnel mines from the former Yugoslavia.

Slovenia completed the destruction of its stockpile of 168,898 antipersonnel mines on 25 March 2003, just ahead of its 1 April 2003 treaty-mandated destruction deadline. Slovenia initially announced it would retain 7,000 antipersonnel mines for training and research purposes, but later reduced the quantity to 3,000. By December 2018, Slovenia had reduced the number of mines retained to just 272.[1]



[1] Mine Ban Treaty Article 7 Report, Form D, 29 April 2019.


Support for Mine Action

Last updated: 17 October 2020

In 2019, the Republic of Slovenia contributed nearly US$1 million in mine action funding. As in previous years, all of Slovenia’s support for mine action in 2019 was contributed through ITF Enhancing Human Security.[1]

In addition to contributions supporting the work of ITF Enhancing Human Security—amounting to some $210,000—Slovenia’s support went to capacity-building, clearance, risk education, and victim assistance projects in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), Jordan, Palestine, Syria, and Ukraine.

Contributions by recipient: 2019

Recipient

Sector

Amount (US$)

Syria

Risk education

330,834

Global

Various

211,860

BiH

Clearance

155,897

Jordan

Risk education

100,845

Palestine

Capacity-building

84,038

Ukraine

Victim assistance

66,803

Afghanistan

Capacity-building

39,224

Total

 

989,501

From 2015–2019, Slovenia’s annual contributions totaled some $3.5 million, with an annual contribution averaging $700,000. This compares to the $3.4 million recorded in the previous five-year period from 2010–2014.

Summary of contributions: 2015–2019[2]

Year

Amount (US$)

% change from previous year (US$)

2019

989,501

+65

2018

598,648

-2

2017

609,616

+7

2016

568,911

-24

2015

749,770

-13

Total

3,516,446

N/A

Note: N/A=not applicable.


[1] ITF Enhancing Human Security, “Annual Report 2019,” March 2020, pp. 17–18.

[2] See previous Monitor profiles.