Pahor’s meeting with the EU Commission President brings no clear answers on what the next steps of the European Commission will be, if it engages itself in the border dispute and helps the implementation of the arbitration award on the border line between Slovenia and Croatia. EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker is of the opinion, that the problem affects the entire European Union and the European perspective of the Western Balkans. He stressed that in the future all open border issues will have to be settled before a country becomes a member of the EU.
According to Mr. Juncker, the first step should be bringing the two sides together. He added that the differences were not as big as they were presented to be. He emphasized that an arbitration award does exist and that it should be fulfilled to the greatest extent possible. Juncker also called on both sides to avoid any incidents.
Slovenian President Borut Pahor meanwhile called on the European Commission to assume a more active role. He stressed that it had a political, legal and moral duty to do so.
Pahor continues his trip at the NATO headquarters today, where he will highlight the efforts for modernizing Slovenia’s security system. In the near future Pahor does not expect Slovenia to fulfill its alliance goal of devoting 2 percent of its GDP for defense – the country’s defense spending will remain at around one percent. However, Slovenia will focus on those expenses and specializations which will allow its future cooperation in the NATO alliance.