Ombudsman dr. Zdenka Cebasek - Travnik on Thursday presented the Human Rights Ombudsman's report for 2006 to MPs, stressing the problems are being addressed too slowly and pointing to the "erased", court backlogs and the problems with the recognition of minorities as the most pending.
"The Ombudsman's annual reports have been warning about the same or very similar issues for a number of years, which means that problems are being addressed too slowly," said Cebasek-Travnik.
She added that certain areas did see some headway: she is, for instance, satisfied that so called Roma law is adopted, but she is not fully satisfied with his content. She pointed out an area where the government could do more: involving citizens in drafting legislation.
Some pieces of legislation become available to the public only a short time before being adopted by the government, which leaves no time for comments. "And even if comments are given, the proponent's response is rather negative," she said.
Speaking on behalf of the government, Justice Ministry State Secretary Robert Marolt told the MPs that the government was aware of the importance of human rights and its own responsibility.
The government's efforts to advocate human rights can be seen, he said, in the recently adopted umbrella bill on the prevention of domestic violence and the national youth programme.
Special attention is also given to the Roma issue and the elimination of court backlogs, Marolt stressed, adding that the backlogs should be cleaned up in a few years.
MPs focused in the debate on Roma and the erased, the latter labelled by the ruling Slovenian Democrats (SDS) as a problem that did not exist until it happened at the formal level.
Yet SDS lawmaker Zvonko Cernac also pointed out that the constitutional law recently proposed by the government would resolve the issue. "I disagree with the notion that the issue cannot be addressed in a manner different than that envisaged in the Constitutional Court ruling."
The Social Democrats (SD) retorted by saying that the costitutional law was the government's attempt to bypass the relevant Constitutional Court rulings.
National Party (SNS) leader Zmago Jelincic meanwhile thought that the ombudsman had always paid too much attention to marginalised groups and "did not care much about the others."
Liberal Democrats (LDS) MP Jozef Skolc meanwhile stressed that problems faced by the Roma go beyond a single family, while the resolution of the problems needs to be broader.
The report was compiled by Cebasek Travnik's predecessor, Matjaz Hanzek, whom she succeeded in February. His report also warns about the conflicts caused by the government wanting to control other branches of power, institutions, media and the civil society.