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Slovenia: Debate Postponed on EU Associate Membership

Ljubljana, 14 May 1997 (RFE/RL) -- Slovenia's parliament today postponed for one week a debate on the ratification of the country's agreement for associate membership in the European Union.

Parliamentary Speaker Janez Podobnik said the decision to postpone the debate was made this morning during a meeting between government officials and the heads of A-L-L political parties in parliament.

The EU accord requires Slovenia to change an article in its constitution that currently bans land ownership by foreigners. Despite the urging of Prime Minsiter Janez Drnovsek and President Milan Kucan this week, parliamentary support for the amendment appears to fall short of the necessary two-thirds majority.

Podobnik said the debate next week would focus on foreign policy issues -- including Slovenia's attempts to enter NATO.

Slovenia signed an accord on associate membership in the EU in June last year.