Hungary will continue to block NATO-Ukraine Council meetings until minority rights restored in Ukraine – Szijjártó
Hungary will continue to block NATO-Ukraine Council meetings until minority rights are restored in Ukraine, Péter Szijjártó, the foreign minister, Hungary Today ezine said.
"He (Szijjártó) said that in terms of Hungary's bilateral ties with neighboring countries, its relations with Ukraine were the most challenging. Whereas Hungary supports Ukraine on matters of territorial integrity and sovereignty, it must keep in mind the many violations in legislation of Hungarian national minority rights. The violations not only concern the Hungarian community’s rights but minority rights more broadly," an article posted on Hungary Today website on Tuesday says.
In addition, Szijjártó said that "from afar it was perhaps understandable that the lives of 150,000 ethnic Hungarians were less important than geopolitical considerations."
"But for us, this community is more important than any geopolitical matter," he said.
Szijjártó said that Hungary's stance had been portrayed on the global stage as a Russia-friendly policy. This, he said, was "absurd."
The minister noted that on March 26, his Ukrainian counterpart, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, "who has been asked by his president to work towards restoring bilateral relations," will visit Budapest.
"We're ready and we'll also make sensible suggestions," he added.
As reported, at the end of February, Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Kuleba said that he would pay a working visit to Budapest (Hungary) on March 26.
Being asked by Interfax-Ukraine on Twitter if Ukraine will consider the new conditions of Hungary concerning a language issue of the national minorities, Kuleba wrote: "We are now looking for a solution that will meet the interests of both countries. I will be in Budapest on March 26. We will continue the conversation there. We need to find a solution to unblock NATO, launch joint investment and infrastructure projects in Zakarpattia region with Hungary."
As reported, the first for seven years meeting of the intergovernmental Ukrainian-Hungarian Cooperation Commission will be held in Budapest in March.