A Hungarian journalist wrote that Transcarpathian Hungarians face continuous insults, and the situation is tense. Transcarpathia is a county of Ukraine populated by 120-150 thousand Hungarians. Most of them have Ukrainian and Hungarian citizenship, many fled their homes after the Russian invasion because they did not want to fight for a country that did not respect their collective rights as an ethnic minority. However, many remained and fight. But remaining Hungarians face atrocities. Hungarians did not move to Ukraine from Hungary. They are an indigenous community living there for a thousand years.
According to index.hu, enforced military conscription affecting the Hungarian community living in Ukraine did not stop. Furthermore, the Hungarian community faces a constant anti-Hungarian mood in Munkács and the neighbouring villages. Moreover, regional media turns local Ukrainians against the Hungarians.
György Dunda, a Hungarian journalist living in Transcarpathia and the director of a local newspaper, Kárpáti Igaz Szó, wrote about the anti-Hungarian insults on his Facebook page. He said that the Ukrainian authorities take off Hungarian symbols, flags and inscriptions in the villages around Munkács. To make matters worse, some leaders of cultural and educational institutions were fired. Authorities also banned Hungarian organisations to wreath the statue of Sándor Petőfi, the poet of the Hungarian 1848 March revolution and freedom fight.
Provided he listed all the anti-Hungarian atrocities since 2017, it would fill an entire newspaper page, Dunda said.
Based on his experience, commenters on Ukrainian news websites regularly scold the Hungarian nation. And he argues that a spark is enough in a tense atmosphere worsened by the war. Mr Dunda says that is their aim.
The tension on the level of political leaders is palpable. PM Viktor Orbán said last week in a meeting with foreign journalists that Ukraine was a ‘no man’s land’, and compared the war-torn country to Afghanistan. He added he did not believe in Ukrainian success and highlighted Russia regularly started its wars weak but became unstoppable later. Ukrainian politicians are outraged. The mayor of Donetsk threatened not only the prime minister but all of the Hungarians. The Ukrainian foreign minister summoned the Hungarian ambassador in Kyiv for an explanation.
Meanwhile, a Hungarian soldier serving on the front, Sándor Fegyir, said in a post that Russian agents spread fake news both in Hungary and Ukraine. They aimed to turn Ukrainians and Hungarians against each other in Transcarpathia. “Hungarians living in Transcarpathia are decent citizens of Ukraine. Everybody took up arms because we do not want the Russian invaders to kill our relatives in Transcarpathia”, Mr Fegyir cleared on his Facebook. He added that everybody remembered the malenky robot and the concentration camps in which the Soviets murdered Hungarians. He also thanked the Hungarians for help from Hungary. He also asked all those who chose to serve Russia not to intervene.
Index.hu wrote before that authorities take men from fuel stations, train and bus stations, shops, markets and even their own houses. Soldiers even distributed enrollment notices at a funeral. “Nobody would like to fight here. Neither Hungarians nor Ukrainians”, a local man said.
After the leaked comments of Orban, who could blame them. Do they pledge their loyalty to the country that has sheltered their families, or the country with a presdent that seems to side with Putin? It is time for these Hungarian expats to speak up about Orban’s comments.
@gaborzsasa, you mean the same country that has been enforcing bans of the Hungarian language in the country? Also, Hungarian-Ukrainians should not be blamed for the actions of Orbans. Victim blaming is wrong ethically and morally. In fact, by doing so, it only gives Hungary more reasons to deny supporting Ukraine fully.
One more thing, why should they support Ukraine if they are being forced to conscription? Again in my other comments, Ukraine should defend itself against the immoral invasion by Russia. However, if Ukraine has to force its ethnic indigenous populations to fight then it is being hypocritically about fighting for self-determination. You either are for self-determination or not for it at all.