Slovenia’s prime minister is on trial accused of involvement in a bribery scandal. The main opposition leader – who is also mayor of the capital – is under investigation for alleged corruption. So is the mayor of the EU nation’s second-largest city. Slovenes say they have had enough. Chanting “Thieves!” several thousand people took to the streets again Monday in this small, crisis-hit Alpine state, rejecting what they call the country’s “corrupt elite.” Thousands also took to the streets last week in what has become biggest outburst of public discontent in decades, outrages that has seriously shaken the nation once praised for its smooth transition from communism to market economy.
Angry demonstrators in the second-largest city of Maribor on Monday pelted the mayor’s office with rocks, bottles and flares, while riot police brought in reinforcements and flew a helicopter above the crowd. Police skirmished with about two dozen hooligans, and witnesses said several were arrested.
In the capital of Ljubljana, several thousand protesters marched through the city center, carrying banners and chanting anti-government slogans a day after left-leaning former prime minister Borut Pahor won the presidential runoff with some 67 percent of the votes. Balloting was marked by a low turnout.
Another peaceful rally of about 2,000 people was held Monday in the eastern town of Celje.