Hungary names conditions necessary for Ukraine-NATO Commission to resume work

Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó has named three conditions under which Hungary would agree to unblock the activities of the Ukraine-NATO Commission.

"The first condition [is that] the transitional period for the language of education should be extended until 2023, and during this time [Ukraine will] have to negotiate with the minority on what changes will be implemented. The second condition, which also fully meets the Venice Commission’s proposals, is that [the norm on the language of education] should not apply to private schools," Szijjártó said in an interview with European Truth (Evropeiska Pravda).

The third condition, he said, has already been fulfilled, as Ukraine has begun consultations with representatives of the Hungarian minority.

The Minister does not rule out that Hungary could block not only the work of the Commission, but also the granting to Ukraine of the status of NATO Aspirant Country.

"In addition, we will take into account the completion of the next round of consultations between the Minister of Education of Ukraine and the Hungarian minority, which is scheduled for the beginning of July," the Minister said.

On June 22, Szijjártó said that Hungary would lift the veto for a separate meeting of NATO leaders with the participation of Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, but that it would continue to block the work of the Ukraine-NATO Commission.

Since autumn 2017, conflict between Ukraine and Hungary has continued over the language statute of the new law "On Education." Budapest believes that it infringes the rights of Transcarpathian Hungarians. The Hungarian Foreign Ministry has, in response, begun blocking Ukraine's participation in NATO events.

  Hungary, NATO-Ukraine Commission, Ukraine