Slovenian Armed Forces

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Slovenian Armed Forces
Slovenska vojska
Sign of Slovenian Army.svg
Slovenian Army emblem
Flag of the Slovenian Armed Forces.svg
Flag of the Slovenian Armed Forces

Anthem of the Slovenian Army:
Founded1991; 28 years ago (1991)
Service branchesSlovenian Ground Force
Slovenian Air Force and Air Defence
Slovenian Navy
Commander-in-ChiefBorut Pahor
Minister of DefenceKarel Erjavec
Chief of the General StaffMajor general Alenka Ermenc
ConscriptionAbolished in 2003
Fit for
military service
402,484 (2009 est.) [1], age 16-49
Active personnel~6,700 [2] (as of May 2018)
Reserve personnel~1,000 (contract reserve soldiers)
Budget€508 million ($581 million) (2019)[3]
Percent of GDP1.04% (2019)[3]
Related articles
HistorySlovenian War of Independence
Slovenian Territorial Defence
RanksSlovenian military ranks

The Slovenian Armed Forces or Slovenian Army (Slovene: Slovenska vojska; SAF/SV) are the armed forces of Slovenia. Since 2003, it is organized as a fully professional standing army. The Commander-in-Chief of the SAF is the President of the Republic of Slovenia (Borut Pahor), while operational command is in the domain of the Chief of the General Staff of the Slovenian Armed Forces.


Slovene soldiers during the Austro-Slovene conflict in Carinthia, 1919

The military history of Slovenia spans less than a hundred years. Following the disintegration of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire at the end of World War I, the Duchy of Styria was divided between the newly established states of German Austria and the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs. Rudolf Maister, a Slovene major of the former Austro-Hungarian Army, occupied the town of Maribor in November 1918 and claimed it for the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs. After a short fight with German Austrian provisional units, the current border was established, which mostly followed the ethnic-linguistic division between Slovenes and ethnic Germans in Styria.

The current Slovenian Armed Forces are descended from the Slovenian Territorial Defence (Teritorialna Obramba Republike Slovenije; or Slovene TO), formed in 1991 by fusion of Territorial Defence (formed in 1968 as a paramilitary complement to the regular army of the former Yugoslav within the territory of Slovenia) with secret alternative command structure, known as the Manoeuvre Structures of National Protection (Manevrska struktura narodne zaščite, or MSNZ), which was an existing but antiquated institution, (unique to Slovenia), intended to enable the republic to form an ad hoc defence structure, akin to a National Guard. It was of negligible importance prior to 1990, with antiquated weapons and few members.

When Slovenia declared independence at the onset of the Yugoslav Wars in 1991, the Slovenian Territorial Defence and the Slovenian police comprised the majority of forces engaging the Yugoslav People's Army during the Ten-Day War. The Slovenian Armed Forces were formally established in 1993 as a reorganization of the Slovenia Territorial Defence Force.

Current status[edit]

A Slovenian soldier with a FN F2000 assault rifle

After 1993, the Slovenian Armed Forces had relied on mandatory military service, with conscripts receiving 6–7 months of training. In 2003, the Slovenian Government abolished conscription and as of July 2004, the Slovenian Armed Forces had been almost completely reorganised into a professional army now based on volunteers. Currently there are approximately 7,300 active troops and approximately 1,500 in reserve, reduced from 55,000 personnel during conscription.

A major reorganization of the Slovenian Armed Forces is currently underway[4] with a goal making them more effective and cheaper. More than half of all commands have been disbanded which has made commanding the subordinated units easier and faster. Soldiers are to be located nearer to their homes in order to minimize travel costs. Since the Slovenian Armed Forces do not have enough modern armored vehicles to maintain three motorized battalions fulfilled at every time, one Wheeled Combat Vehicles Company and one Tank Company have been organized within the Logistics brigade, which now lends vehicles to any of four newly formed infantry regiments, regarding to the regiments' needs. Reorganization also transformed 72nd Brigade from a support unit to a combat unit and thus equaled it with the 1st Brigade. Both brigades were added support elements, such as Air Defense, Artillery, Intelligence, etc. The operational units now consist of Special Operations Unit, Naval Division, an Aviation Regiment and three brigades, the 1st (responsible for western Slovenia), 72nd (responsible for eastern Slovenia) and Logistics Brigade.

NATO membership[edit]

Slovene KFOR unit

As part of the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Slovenia was never a member of the Warsaw Pact. Today, the foreign policy priority of NATO membership drives Slovenia's defense reorganization. Once many countries lifted the arms embargo on Slovenia in 1996, the country embarked on a military procurement program to bolster its status as a NATO candidate and to aid its transformation into a mobile force. Active in the SFOR deployment in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia is also a charter member of Partnership for Peace and a regular participant in PfP exercises. The United States provides bilateral military assistance to Slovenia, including through the International Military Education and Training (IMET) program, the State Partnership Program (aligned with Colorado), and the EUCOM Joint Contact Team Program.

Slovenia formally joined NATO in March 2004.[5] The transition of its armed forces from a primarily conscript-based territorial defense organization to a professional force structure has the ultimate goal of creating NATO-interoperable combat units able to operate on an even par with units from other NATO armies. Implementation of interoperability objectives as determined by the Planning and Review Process (PARP) and the Individual Partnership Program (IPP) as part of Slovenia's PfP participation proceeds. Slovenia's elite units already train with and are integrated into international units including NATO members—for example as part of SFOR and on Cyprus. Its elite mountain troops will be assigned to the Multinational Land Force peacekeeping battalion with Italy, Hungary, and Croatia. Slovenia hosted its first PfP exercise in 1998--"Cooperative Adventure Exchange"—a multinational disaster-preparedness command post exercise involving almost 6,000 troops from 19 NATO and PfP member nations.

Slovenian soldiers are a part of international forces serving in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Afghanistan,[6] Iraq, Chad, and Lebanon. They have also served in Cyprus and the Golan Heights as a part of UNFICYP and UNDOF respectively.

Slovenia hosts Multinational Centre of Excellence for Mountain Warfare (MN COEMW; Slovene: Večnacionalni center odličnosti za gorsko bojevanje), one of NATO Centres of Excellence, located in Bohinjska Bela, Slovenia. It is "responsible for training individuals and units for operation in the mountains and other terrains difficult to pass".[7]


The Slovenian Armed Forces are organized as single-branch armed forces with the army as their primary component. The personnel is divided into three categories:

  • professional soldiers (full-time soldiers)
  • contract reserve soldiers (serve up to 30 days per year)
  • voluntary recruits (basic training)

Order of Battle[edit]

Slovenian Armed Forces locations 2018
Green pog.svg 1st Brigade, 72nd Brigade, and infantry regiments Yellow pog.svg Territorial regiments Blue 0080ff pog.svg Air Base Blue pog.svg Naval Base Lightgreen pog.svg Special Forces Purple pog.svg Logistic Brigade, and logistic units Orange pog.svg GM 403 radar station
Pink pog.svg Control and Reporting Centre
Structure of the Slovenian Armed Forces Command, 2017
  • General Staff of the Slovenian Armed Forces, in Ljubljana
    • Military Orchestra
    • Protocol Unit
    • Joint Operations Center
      • Situation Monitoring Section
      • Movement Coordination Section
      • Operations Management Section
      • Support Branch
    • Force Command, in Vrhnika
      • Forces Command Support Unit, in Vrhnika
      • Military Police Unit
      • Electronic Warfare Unit
      • Communication and Information Systems Unit
      • Combined Arms Training Center
      • 1st Brigade, in Ljubljana
        • 10th Infantry Regiment, in Ljubljana
          • 4x Infantry Companies
          • Headquarters and Logistic Company
        • 132nd (Mountain) Infantry Regiment, in Bohinjska Bela
        • Territorial Regiment, in Nova Gorica
        • Combat Support Battalion, in Ljubljana
          • Intelligence and Reconnaissance Company
          • Anti-Tank Company, with Spike MR/LR ATGMs
          • Fire Support Battery, with TN90 155mm towed howitzers and MN9 120mm mortars
          • Light Air Defense Missile Battery, with Giraffe radar and Igla-2 MANPADS
          • Engineer Company
          • Nuclear, Biological, Chemical Defense Company
          • Signals Company
          • Military Police Company
      • 72nd Brigade, in Maribor
        • 20th Infantry Regiment, in Celje
          • 4x Infantry Companies
          • Headquarters and Logistic Company
        • 74th Infantry Regiment, in Maribor
          • 4x Infantry Companies
          • Headquarters and Logistic Company
        • Territorial Regiment, in Novo Mesto
        • Combat Support Battalion, in Murska Sobota
          • Intelligence and Reconnaissance Company
          • Anti-Tank Company, with Spike MR/LR ATGMs
          • Fire Support Battery, with TN90 155mm towed howitzers and MN9 120mm mortars
          • Light Air Defense Missile Battery, with Giraffe radar and Igla-2 MANPADS
          • Engineer Company
          • Nuclear, Biological, Chemical Defense Company
          • Signals Company
          • Military Police Company
      • Logistic Brigade, in Kranj
        • 157th Logistics Regiment, in Šentvid
          • 1st Vehicle Maintenance Company
          • 2nd Vehicle Maintenance Company
          • 3rd Weapons Maintenance Company
          • 5th Wheeled Combat Vehicles Company
          • 45th Tracked Combat Vehicles Center
          • Infrastructure Maintenance
          • Spare Parts Storage and Distribution Unit
        • 670th Logistics Regiment, in Slovenska Bistrica
          • Service Company
          • Supply Company
          • 1st Transport Company
          • 2nd Transport Company
          • Fixed Supply Company
          • Driving School
          • Fuel Distribution
          • Uniforms and Equipment Distribution
        • Medical Unit, in Šentvid
          • Medical Logistic Center
          • Medical Center
          • Medical Company West
          • Medical Company East
          • Medical Hospital - Role 2 Military Treatment Facility
          • Veterinary Service
          • Laboratory for Nuclear, radiological, chemical and biological defense
      • 15th Wing, at Cerklje ob Krki Air Base
        • 16th Airspace Control and Reporting Centre, in Zgornji Brnik
        • 107th Air Base, at Cerklje ob Krki Air Base
          • Cerklje ob Krki Air Base Support Company
        • 151st Helicopter Squadron, at Cerklje ob Krki Air Base
        • 152nd Aircraft Squadron, at Cerklje ob Krki Air Base
        • 153rd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, at Cerklje ob Krki Air Base
          • Aeronautical-technical Engineering
          • Aircraft Maintenance Company
          • Helicopter Maintenance Company
        • Flight School, at Cerklje ob Krki Air Base
      • 430th Naval Division, in Ankaran
        • Naval Operations Center
        • Multirole Vessels Detachment
        • Special Underwater Operations Detachment
        • Explosive Ordnance Disposal Platoon
      • Special Operations Unit, in Kočevska Reka
        • Special Operations Company
        • Combat Service Support Company
        • Special Operations Training Center
    • Specialized Unit of the Military Police, in Ljubljana
    • Military Education Center, in Maribor
      • Command and Staff School, in Maribor
      • Officer School, in Maribor
      • Non-Commissioned Officer School, in Maribor
      • Foreign Languages School, in Begunje na Gorenjskem
      • Basic Military Skills Center, in Vipava
      • Library, Information and Publishing Center, in Ljubljana
      • E-Learning Section, in Maribor
      • Military Museum of the Slovenian Armed Forces, in Maribor
    • Slovenian Army Sport Unit

Military bases[edit]

Military airports[edit]

The Slovenian army currently maintains one military airport Cerklje ob Krki near town of Brežice. The airport's official name is Cerklje ob Krki Airbase.

The others that are partially military are:

International cooperation[edit]

Slovenia is part of the United Nations, NATO and the European Union, and supports the efforts of these organisations in peace operations and humanitarian activities. The Slovenian Armed Forces have been participating in various missions since 1997, when the first unit was deployed to Albania for a humanitarian operation. Slovenia has continued its efforts in international cooperation by participating in various missions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Cyprus, Pakistan and other countries.

Current operations[edit]

Deployment Organization Operation Personnel[8]
Afghanistan NATO Resolute Support Mission 8
Bosnia and Herzegovina NATO Joint Enterprise 4
Kosovo NATO KFOR 240
Macedonia NATO Joint Enterprise 2
Serbia NATO Joint Enterprise 1
Bosnia and Herzegovina EU EUFOR Althea 9
Mali EU EUTM Mali 5
Lebanon UN UNIFIL 15
Syria UN UNTSO 3
Italy EU EU Navfor Med 4
Iraq CJTF Operation Inherent Resolve 6
Latvia NATO NATO Enhanced Forward Presence 50



  1. ^ "The World Factbook - Manpower fit for military service". www.cia.gov. Archived from the original on 13 May 2009.
  2. ^ "About the Slovenian Armed Forces". www.slovenskavojska.si. Retrieved 6 June 2018.
  3. ^ a b "Defence Expenditure of NATO Countries (2012-2019)" (PDF). NATO Public Diplomacy Division. 25 June 2019. Retrieved 31 August 2019.
  4. ^ http://www.mo.gov.si/fileadmin/mo.gov.si/pageuploads/pdf/ministrstvo/SOPR2013_2018.pdf
  5. ^ http://www.nato.int/docu/update/2004/03-march/e0329a.htm
  6. ^ The Slovenia Times - Daily News Archived 14 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ Slovenian Armed Forces. "Multinational Centre of Excellence for Mountain Warfare". Slovenian Armed Forces. Archived from the original on 24 February 2012. Retrieved 28 January 2012.
  8. ^ "Slovenian Armed Forces - International operations and missions". www.slovenskavojska.si. Retrieved 20 March 2018.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]