Protection and promotion of human rights is a significant element of Slovenia’s foreign policy. Human rights are vital to long-term peace, stability and security.
With a progressive approach to addressing human rights, Slovenia strives to enhance norms and standards, including further codification of international law governing this area (development of new standards) and other specific activities for ensuring respect and application thereof. For Slovenia it is important to engage in these activities within its national policies, in international organizations and other initiatives. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is striving for Slovenia’s accession to new human rights documents and draws up national reports on their implementation on a regular basis.
Slovenia considers human rights comprehensively; they are regarded as one of the three pillars of international co-existence, in addition to security and development. Without respect for human rights, there is no security or economic and social development and vice versa, without development and security, human rights cannot be fully enjoyed.
Slovenia advocates the importance of responsibility for human rights violations and supports the International Criminal Court and other international tribunals for grave human rights violations.
The universal logo for human rights: From more than 15,300 submissions, an international jury together with the internet community selected a universal symbol for human rights. The Human Rights Logo and any related material can now be used by everyone at no cost for the promotion and protection of human rights. For more information regarding this campaign click on the logo.
Slovenia continues to promote a comprehensive approach in addressing human rights issues in close connection with development and security policies.
Slovenia's key priorities are gender equality, children's rights, the rights of the elderly, combating all forms of discrimination, human rights education, human rights and the environment, and human rights in development cooperation and security. Slovenia is also active in international efforts to abolish the death penalty, supports the role of human rights defenders and promotes respect for the rights of other vulnerable groups, such as LGBTI persons and persons with disabilities.
We continue to focus on human rights education and the promotion of international law mechanisms for the protection of human rights. Slovenia regards human rights education as a priority and considers it vital for establishing and maintaining a democratic, tolerant and sustainable society promoting human values and mutual respect.
We will continue to address human rights protection through the Responsibility to Protect concept, human security framework and strive towards enhancing cooperation among all UN’s existing mechanisms.
We remain concerned about issues regarding racial discrimination and in this regard staying committed to the Convention on Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
In the United Nations, Slovenia is active in different bodies dealing with all aspects of human rights. Among them are the Human Rights Council in Geneva, the Third Committee of the General Assembly in New York, the Security Council, Open Ended Working Group on Ageing and the UN’s Office in Vienna, paying special attention to the Office on Drugs and Crime.
In October 2015 Slovenia was for the second time elected to the Human Rights Council for the period 2016–2018. The election is an acknowledgement to Slovenia, its diplomacy and the long-standing engagement in, and positive contribution to, the protection and implementation of human rights around the world. Slovenia served as a member of the Council for the first time from 2007 to 2010.
In the work of the Third Committee Slovenia participates on the basis of our key priorities, defending the principles of democracy, human rights and dignity. Every two years, Slovenia and Belgium table a resolution on the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination.
Slovenia participates in open debates of the Security Council, particularly on women, peace and security, and children in armed conflict. As a strong supporter and advocate of gender equality and empowerment of women we attach importance to the implementation of the Security Council Resolution 1325 and 2242 on Women, Peace and Security and Security Council Resolution 1820 with an emphasis on sexual violence in armed conflicts and post conflict situations. Slovenia is also closely following implementations of Resolutions 1539 and 1612 adopted for protection of children affected by armed conflict.
Slovenia actively participates in the Open-ended Working Group on Ageing where a representative of Slovenia currently also serves at a Bureau member. We have been actively engaged in establishing the mandate of the UN Human Rights Council's Independent Expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons. Slovenia strives for a proper approach to addressing human rights in various periods of life, and one of its priorities is treating the rights of older persons in a more appropriate manner. The ageing of the population and related demographic changes are becoming a global trend in developed as well as developing countries, posing a challenge to global sustainable development.
Our actions are also backed by involvement in the work of subsidiary bodies of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), such as the Commission on Status of Women and the Commission for Social Development, where we participate as an observer.
Slovenia is a proud member of the following groups of friends (GoF):
- GoF of Children and Armed Conflict,
- GoF of Violence against Children,
- GoF of Responsibility to Protect,
- GoF of Human Security,
- GoF of Alliance of Civilizations,
- GoF of Sport for Development and Peace, and
- GoF of UN Democracy Fund.