The autochthonous Slovene minorities
The Co-ordination of Slovenian minorities (Slovenska manjšinska koordinacija – SLOMAK), the representative body of Slovenes living in Austria, Croatia, Hungary and Italy, was established two years ago with the purpose of linking Slovenian minorities in four States and contributing to their development within the states they are part of. It was established when Slovenia and Hungary were approaching the European Union, in view of the perspective that almost all Slovenes would share similar political and social systems. Members of SLOMAK are the umbrella organisation of Slovenian minorities in relevant States.
Representatives of Slovenian minorities in Austria, Italy, Croatia and Hungary have followed with deep interest the European Union enlargement process; the accession of Slovenia and Hungary assured most Slovenians to share common EU citizenship. We hope that as soon as possible Croatia could join the EU as well.
We also hope that the process of ratification of the EU Constitutional Treaty will soon restart. All over Europe minorities positively evaluate the treaty. In spite of criticisms, that some our representatives share upon the agreed text, we realize that the Treaty is a step forward towards the awareness that linguistic and cultural diversity represents the common heritage, that all Europeans have to protect and valorise. Minorities in the European Union fully appreciate the activities of the European Parliament in this domain.
Even if we are aware of the fact that the EP has not been given direct competencies in the field of protection of minorities, we feel that we should inform the European institution on specific problems our communities face in spite of clear international standards.