The European Commission is concerned about the situation in Slovenia although it has never treated Slovenia as a problematic member state since the country joined the EU in 2004, European Crisis Management Commissioner Janez Lenarčič told daily Dnevnik in an interview on Saturday.
“In Slovenia, the political arena is much more varied, whereas in Hungary one bloc has a constitutional majority in parliament,” said Lenarčič, noting that some might wish Slovenia would follow in the footsteps of Hungary and Poland.
Slovenia still has media plurality “and I hope it stays that way”, the Commissioner added, noting that the Commission is now worried about the government not funding the Slovenian Press Agency STA.
The Commission is also concerned with the pressure on media more generally, including verbal attacks on journalists. “Freedom of the press is a key ingredient of democracy, and democracy is one of the fundamental values of the EU,” said Lenarčič.
With Slovenia soon to take on the EU Council presidency, the Commissioner said that a country presiding the EU Council is expected to act towards strengthening and advocating the EU’s fundamental values. (Sebastijan R. Maček | STA)