BUDAPEST, January 20. /TASS/. The Hungarian government expects the Ukrainian authorities to stop harassing ethnic Hungarians in the Zakarpatye Region, the Hungarian Foreign Ministry’s State Secretary Tamas Menczer told the Kossuth radio station on Friday.
In recent days, Hungarian flags and inscriptions in Hungarian were removed from public buildings in the city of Mukachevo in Ukraine’s Zakarpatye Region where a large number of ethnic Hungarians live. In addition, the labor contract of the Mukachevo Hungarian school’s principal was terminated.
"We called on the Mukachevo municipal authorities to reverse these decisions and immediately restore the status quo, and we expect that Ukraine’s national leaders will do everything they can to make sure that local authorities act fairly and harassment and persecution against Hungarians stop," Menczer pointed out. He noted that the Hungarian government had long demanded Ukraine stop violating the rights of ethnic Hungarians in the Zakarpatye Region in light of plans to deprive them of the opportunity to speak and study in their native language.
"Our position on the matter has always been firm but we put our differences aside" after the armed conflict broke out in Ukraine, the Foreign Ministry official stressed. However, in his words, Hungary cannot ignore what is going on at the moment. "Anti-Hungarian actions are unacceptable," Menczer stated.
He emphasized that if Kiev wanted to join the European Union, it should respect the rights of ethnic minorities in Ukraine, as well as all the related international laws and rules.