Szijarto said that “Hungarian schools in Ukraine are in danger.”
Hungary is already openly stating that it will not support Ukraine’s accession to the EU as long as “Hungarian schools in Transcarpathia are in danger.” Previously, the Orban government limited itself to hints about this.
Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjártó was quoted in Twitter Representative of the Hungarian government Zoltan Kovacs. The head of the Foreign Ministry said that Budapest will not support either the transatlantic or European integration of Ukraine because of the law on education.
Szijjarto recalled that “while 1,300 Hungarian schools and kindergartens are accepting Ukrainian refugees, 99 Hungarian educational and secondary schools in Ukraine are under threat of closure due to the Ukrainian language law.”
Budapest has already made it clear before that it “will put spokes in the wheels” of Ukraine’s future in the EU and NATO until Kyiv makes concessions on the law on education.
The Law on Education provides that the educational process in Ukraine takes place in the state language. This does not suit Hungary. The Orbán government, which is generally sympathetic to Putin’s aggressive policies, claims that the education law somehow “infringes” on the rights of the Hungarian national minority.
However, back in May 2022, Hungary stated that it would support Ukraine’s European integration, and “put the language issue aside.”
For this reason, the Hungarian authorities have been blocking meetings of the Ukraine-NATO Commission since 2017. However, in March 2023, the Alliance managed to successfully circumvent this procedure and invite Ukraine to the summit, despite the protests of Budapest.