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There are other minority groups, most of whom immigrated, for economic reasons, from other regions of the former Yugoslavia after World War II. Slovenia is situated in southeastern Europe on the Balkan Peninsula and is bordered by Austria to the north, Hungary to the northeast, Croatia to the south and southeast, and Italy and the Adriatic Sea to the west.

A mountainous country, Slovenia sits in the foothills of the eastern Alps just south of the Julian Alps, the Kamnik-Savinja Alps, the Karawanken chain, and the Pohorje Massif on the Austrian border.

This independent state persisted until the latter part of the eighth century when it was absorbed into the Frankish empire.

In the tenth century, Slovenia fell under the control of the Holy Roman Empire and was reorganized as the duchy of Carantania by the Holy Roman Emperor Otto I (912–973).

The rest of the population was made up of Croats (2.7 percent), Serbs (2.4 percent), Bosnians (1.3 percent), Hungarians (0.43 percent), Montenegrins (0.22 percent), Macedonians (0.22 percent), Albanians (0.18 percent) and Italians (0.16 percent).

Although initially a political tool, Slovene eventually gained a new level of prestige and provided a linguistic identity that helped shape Slovenia's national identity. Two important national symbols are the linden tree and the chamois, a European antelope, both of which are abundant throughout the country.

About 7 percent of the population speaks Serbo-Croatian. Unlike other Slavic cultures, the Slovenes have been greatly influenced by German and Austrian cultures, a result of centuries of rule by the Austrian Habsburgs.

Italian influence is evident in the regions that border Italy.

In addition to the capital, Ljubljana, other important cities include Maribor, Kranj, Novo Mesto, and Celje.

Areas along the coast enjoy a warm Mediterranean climate while those in the mountains to the north have cold winters and rainy summers.

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