Ambassador Benedejcic Presents Credentials to Belarus President

Slovenia's Ambassador to Russia Andrej Benedejcic handed his credentials to Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko at a ceremony in Minsk on Friday, 29 July, noting that the two nations shared a common historical experience, in particular during World War II, when both peoples suffered great hardship.

Benedejcic told STA that this historical experience led to Slovenia's commitment to the world order established after WWII. According to him, Slovenia has often demonstrated this commitment, currently also as the country chairing the OSCE.

Slovenia's stint comes at a very hard time, which is why the country is counting on Belarus's help in the effort to ensure the security organisation would continue to operate successfully, the ambassador said.

He said that President Lukashenko voiced an interest in consolidating bilateral relations in the spirit demonstrating the fact that Slovenia and Belarus are both Slavic nations.

The ceremony was also attended by Foreign Minister Sergei Martynov, whom the incoming Slovenian ambassador met on 28 July to present him with a copy of his credentials.

Benedejcic is also scheduled to meet Belarus Minister of Trade Aleksandr Ivanko and several representatives of companies that do business with Slovenia. He will be accompanied by the representative of the Ljubljana-based prefabricated houses manufacturer Riko in Minsk and the company's general manager Janez Skrabec.

The ambassador, who met the outgoing head of the OSCE office in Minsk, Ambassador Eberhard Heyken, told STA that Foreign Minister Dimitrij Rupel was scheduled to visit Belarus in the second half of the year in his capacity as OSCE chairman.

Benedejcic presented his credentials to Speaker of Turkmenistan's Parliament Ovezgeldy Ataev in late June. Turkmenistan is one of the five Central Asian countries that the Moscow-based ambassador will be responsible for.

Source: Slovene Press Agency STA