On Tuesday, December 12th, the Centre for European Perspective (CEP) hosted a roundtable discussion titled ‘The Republic of Slovenia as a Non-Permanent Member of the UN Security Council 2024–2025: Streamlining our Approach Toward Common Objectives.’ The event took place at Jable Castle.

The discussion highlighted Slovenia’s commitment to four key priority areas during its presidency: 1) proactive measures for conflict prevention; 2) ensuring the protection of civilians in times of armed conflicts; 3) advancing the cause of women, peace, and security; and 4) addressing the intricate relationship between climate, peace, and security. These areas of emphasis were carefully chosen based on existing needs and unanswered questions, illuminating persisting challenges that demand ongoing attention.

Roundtable’s Key Contributors

Nina Čepon, Executive Director of CEP, commenced the event with introductory remarks. She expressed gratitude to all attendees for their presence and subsequently provided insights into CEP’s initiatives. Her remarks touched upon diverse projects, ranging from collaborations with Ukraine and the Western Balkans to addressing misinformation, building capacities for peacekeeping and engaging in projects involving artificial intelligence.

Following Ms. Čepon’s introductory remarks, Mr Peter Grk, Secretary General of the Bled Strategic Forum and National Coordinator for the Western Balkans at the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia, skillfully guided the conversation with a panel of five speakers. Setting the stage, Mr. Flavio Milan from the Federal Department for Foreign Affairs of Switzerland, heading UN coordination and serving as deputy head of the UN division in Bern, shared opening insights. His unique perspective, rooted in Switzerland’s precedence over Slovenia in the United Nations Security Council, offered valuable insights and experiences. In light of unfolding global events, Mr. Milan acknowledged the challenges anticipated in the upcoming year.

The subsequent contributors included Mr Matej Marn, Head of the UN Security Council Task Force at the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia; Ms Sabina Stadler Repnik, Head of the Strategic Studies and Analyses Service at the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia; Dr Ljubica Jelušič, Professor at the University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Social Sciences; and Mr Samo Selimović, Coordinator of the Peace Operations Training Centre (POTC).

Roundtable’s Conclusions

The roundtable also served as an opportunity to map out other Slovenian actors – NGOs, Institutes and research organisations – to present their activities, aligned with the Slovenian priorities and provide ideas on future collaboration with the Slovenian government within these topics.

The dialogue, alongside the panellists, reached a consensus on the challenging times anticipated ahead. Despite Slovenia’s relatively small size, the prevailing sentiment was that size should not be a limiting factor. The collective commitment urged the pursuit of peace while remaining steadfast in upholding core values.

We want to thank the panellists, representatives of various Slovenian NGOs and institutes, and the numerous audience members who contributed to the successful and engaging roundtable. Even though our traditional pre-holiday roundtables were halted during the COVID-19 pandemic, we will strive to continue with this tradition and offer you insight into another relevant topic next year.