Slovenia Seeks Policy Change on ‘the Erased’

The chief of Slovenia’s Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Commission says Ljubljana may review its policy on the thousands of ex-residents who were refused Slovene citizenship after 1991.

Ivo Vajgl said the so-called ‘erased people’ would receive documents and be compensated.

‘The erased’ were people who had permanent residence in Slovenia and the citizenship of another republic of the former Yugoslavia who, after the break up of the country in the early 1990s, did not apply for Slovenian citizenship.

There were approximately 200,000 such persons, 30,000 of which were deleted from the records without receiving any decision, thus illegally and formally ceasing to exist.

The documents that were issued to them earlier in Slovenia became invalid and they lost their right to residency.
Many suddenly found themselves at a centre for foreigners to later be deported.

In 1994 the first complaint was filed with Slovenia’s Constitutional Court, which established it was unconstitutional.

After that, Slovenia adopted a new residential rights law, under pressure from non-governmental organisations. However, the law referred only to those that constantly resided in Slovenia after 1992 and not those who had been driven out of the country.

Slovenia’s authorities have officially recognized 18,307 “erased people” but 4,000 of them are still unable to legalise their status.

Vajgl was on a visit to Belgrade when he made the statement.

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