Hungary searches solution for protecting minority rights in Ukraine
“We are interested in solution, not in a scandal, because we have 150 000 Hungarians in TransCarpathian region”, – said Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó . “We hope that we can come to a solution, that will not violate the rights of the minorities in Ukraine“. Szijjártó shared with Brussels press corps views of Hungarian government on the situation with the violation of minority language rights in Ukraine, while attending the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Brussels this week.
The European values are the basis of the Hungarian position, namely the respect of minority rights. “First of all the decision of Venice Commission must be respected“, Szijjártó insists. Second, the dialogue between the Ukrainian government, and minorities should be established without delay, and the third request is to restrain from stripping minorities from the rights they have already been granted. Furthermore, the Hungarian government proposes a number of tactical steps to ensure the rights of the language minorities in the line of existing European norms. One of the priority measures could be the decision of the Ukrainian parliament to “postpone the implementation” of the law, depriving minorities of having education in their language, until 2023, and use this period to conduct negotiation with minorities.While launching the digalog, the Ukrainian authorities are expected to open the possibility for private and church school to conduct education in minority languages.
Minister expressed hope that “Ukranian friends” would accept the “requests” of the Hungarian government, searching to protect the minority rights in line with European norms and laws.
The exchange with Brussels press took place in the framework of the monthly European Foreign Affairs Council (28/05/2018), and ahead of the meeting between Minister Szijjártó and the US Secretary of State Pompeo, where is issue of the Hungarian minorities in Ukraine will be also discussed.