Budapest, June 26 (MTI) – A difference between traditional national minorities and immigrant communities must be emphasised while human rights are observed by all possible means, MP Zsolt Csenger-Zalan said in Strasbourg, addressing the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe today.

Approving a report fostered by Carlos Costa Neves, of the European Peoples’ Party, PACE said it was alarmed by the rise of anti-democratic and xenophobic political parties in Europe and wanted to highlight the positive role of different cultures in the building of national identities and of a European identity.

Csenger-Zalan, of the ruling Fidesz party, said a key element to strengthen a respect for identity was to foster a mutual understanding between co-existing national, linguistic and religious communities.

He said that he agreed with Costa Neves’s report, in which the rapporteur calls for the preservation of human and cultural rights for both ethnic minorities and immigrant communities with their own distinct culture and required “a radical shift from assimilation policies asserting a homogeneous culture of the majority.”

At the same time he said the differences between traditional national minorities and immigrant communities must be taken into account when best practices are formed. Csenger-Zalan said the Council of Europe’s framework convention on national minorities and its language charter should be integrated into the European Union’s legal practices.



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