Slovenia Celebrates 25 Years of Independence
On Tuesday, June 14th, the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia hosted a gala anniversary reception, celebrating 25 years of independence. The reception was held at the residence of the Slovenian Ambassador to Israel, H.E. Ms. Barbara Sušnik, overlooking the sea in Herzliya.
In attendance at the reception were a range of guests, from representatives of various embassies, Israeli Government representatives and Slovenian diplomats to local businesspersons, members of the Jewish community in Ljubljana, and musicians, including world-renowned conductor Ronen Nissan and vocalist Tair from the popular Israeli-Yemenite music group A-WA.
Ambassador Sušnik opened the formal part of the evening by expressing sympathy and support for Israel in light of the recent terror attack in Tel Aviv. The Ambassador emphasized the principles behind Slovenian independence, including commitments to human rights, helping those in need, and Responsibility to Protect (R2P) that serve as the basis of international diplomatic cooperation. She closed her remarks by expressing hope for peace in the Middle East and a negotiated two-state solution.
Ambassador Sušnik then called up the Deputy Foreign Minister of Slovenia, who had served as Slovenia's first Ambassador to Israel, Darja Bavdaž Kuret offer some remarks in honor of the occasion. Both the Ambassador and the Deputy Foreign Minister emphasized the close historical ties between Israel and Slovenia, and artistic, cultural and diplomatic cooperation between the two countries.
Israeli Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked addressed the guests next. The minister mentioned prior diplomatic exchanges between Slovenia and Israel and expressed her hope that the forthcoming increase of direct flights between the countries would lead to further visits and cooperation and that Israel would open an embassy in Slovenia.
Guests were then treated to a musical rendition of the national anthems of both Slovenia and Israel, and a theatrical performance by members of the Jewish Cultural Center of Ljubljana. Slovenia is home to approximately 500 Jews, centered in Ljubljana, and has seen a renaissance of Jewish activity in recent years. Israel and Slovenia have enjoyed full diplomatic relations since 1992, and friends of both Slovenia can look forward to celebrating Israeli-Slovenian ties on many more such occasions in coming years.
Photo Courtesy of the Slovenian Embassy
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