While in Satu Mare, northern Romania on Thursday, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said that the Foreign Ministry in Budapest was right for not allowing the Hungarian officials to attend the Romanian National Day celebrations on December 1st, explaining that the Magyars have no reason to celebrate on this day. Orban argued that this is an honest attitude also to the Romanians.
“I am a traditionalist and I think that sincerity is the best method, even if sore points are at stake. Here we have a diplomatic sore point, but it’s better to sincerely assume the conflict than being double-faced. Magyars have no reason to celebrate on December 1st, so they don’t celebrate, which is an honest attitude to the Romanians as well, for at least we don’t lie to them. I believe that the Magyar diplomacy was right when choosing the honest, sincere way,” Hungarian PM Orban stated, as quoted by Agerpres.
Viktor Orban came to Romania at the invitation at UDMR leader Kelemen Hunor.
Orban also urged the Magyars living in Romania to go to the polls on Sunday, arguing that the result of the parliamentary elections will influence the quality of their lives, the destiny of their localities, but also the political relations between Hungary and Romania.
“So, I would ask all Magyars living in Romania to go to the polls as many as possible for this will influence the quality of their lives, the fate of their localities, will influence political relations, and will also influence Hungary for it’s in our interest that Magyars in Romania go to cast their vote,” the Hungarian premier stated, while adding that the Magyar community in Romania should “have a strong representation” in the future parliament in Bucharest, or else it will end up being “neglected”, which is not desirable.
Hungary’s relations with Romania have deteriorated since 2012, Hungarian Vice-premier Zsolt Semjén and Foreign Affairs parliamentary committee chairman Zsolt Németh said recently during a press conference, the officials suggesting that Budapest should have not tolerated some attitudes in Bucharest. Asked about responsibilities, Zsolt Semjén replied: “I have a clear conscience.” The Hungarian Vice-premier suggested Budapest shouldn’t have tolerated some attitudes in Bucharest. “We have always kept quiet – a way to say it – but now we are with our backs against the wall. Hungarian diplomacy could be criticized for not hitting the fist on the table earlier,” Zsolt Semjén said. According to index.hu the Hungarian official also accused the Romanian state of laying political pressure on the Hungarian minority in Romania through “disguised court proceedings.”
Hungarian FM Péter Szijjártó said last month that the Hungarian people has no reason to celebrate December 1, the National Day of Romania, banning the diplomats from attending the celebrations related to this event. The Romanian Foreign Ministry reacted to the decision, saying “it is hard to understand, given that the respect for the national values and symbols of a country are an indisputable part of the values shared by the European Union and the trans-Atlantic community.”
Asked on Wednesday during a news conference if he considers opportune the UDMR invitation addressed to the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, to come on Thursday in Satu Mare for talks, but also to discuss about the tensions between Budapest and Bucharest, the UDMR leader said that during the meeting with Orban he will make a call to mobilize the Hungarian community for the general elections in Romania.