A state secretary of the foreign ministry on Wednesday called on Ukraine’s leadership to restore the acquired rights of ethnic minorities instead of making “baseless accusations”.
The Ukrainian foreign ministry announced on Tuesday to seek legal evaluation of Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó’s visit to Berehove (Beregszász) on Tuesday, which they said went against the Ukrainian ministry’s previous recommendations. The ministry said they had earlier received a diplomatic note from the Hungarian embassy in Kiev, saying that Szijjártó had been invited by Ukrainian lawmaker László Brenzovics, leader of the Transcarpathian Hungarian Cultural Association (KMKSZ).
In response, Tamás Menczer, the Hungarian foreign ministry’s state secretary in charge of communications and international representation, said that Szijjártó’s statement was “clear and unequivocal.” Hungary had supported Ukraine “in countless ways”, while that country’s previous president and “the forces connected to him” stripped ethnic Hungarians of their rights, violating thereby international agreements, he said. “Hungary aims to improve its ties to Ukraine and hopes that the new Ukrainian president will steer his own country that way,” Menczer said. During his visit to Berehove on Tuesday, Szijjártó said, “we sincerely hope — and hoping does not equal meddling in internal affairs — that the makeup of the new parliament in Kiev will allow for the two countries to significantly improve their relations.”