It is “unacceptable” that the Kiev government is using the challenges in eastern Ukraine as an excuse to continually undermine the rights of national minorities, including the Hungarians in Transcarpathia, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said on Friday. at an extraordinary meeting of NATO foreign ministers.
In a statement, the Foreign Ministry quoted Szijjártó as saying during the virtual meeting that Hungary has a vested interest in a strong, secure and democratic Ukraine and supports the country’s territorial integrity and sovereignty. At the same time, the government considers that the violation of the rights of the Hungarian communities is “unacceptable”, including a bill which would practically exclude dual nationality from public office.
“If they adopt it, it will considerably limit the room for maneuver of the Hungarian government in terms of supporting Ukraine,” he said. Szijjártó added that he had warned all NATO member countries about this and called on them to help end the related legal violations.
Szijjártó also said that everything should be done to avoid inciting a Cold War atmosphere. He added that the period of the Cold War had been a “nightmare” for Central Europe and that its return had to be prevented.
Defense Minister meets his Ukrainian counterpart: all forms of aggression are “unacceptable”
Benkő underlined Hungary’s support for the independence, national sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.
He welcomed the recent consultations between the US and Russian presidents, adding that experience shows that it is preferable for Central Europe that the US and Russia can speak to each other directly, at the highest level.
Szijjártó also said that at the next NATO-Russia Council meeting, Hungary will be represented by a Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs instead of an Ambassador, to emphasize the importance of the meeting.
Featured photo illustration via Péter Szijjártó’s Facebok page