Budapest: Hungary will not support Ukraine’s course to NATO and the EU

Budapest cannot support Kyiv’s Euro-Atlantic efforts until they abolish the "discriminatory" Ukrainian law "On Education," as stated by the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Hungary, Péter Szijjártó, at the Eastern Partnership summit on the 24th of November in Brussels, Radio Liberty reports. 

"We cannot do this and support Euro-Atlantic efforts (of Ukraine), because Kyiv has neglected the rights of ethnic minorities and has flagrantly violated the Ukraine-EU Association Agreement, which came into force in early September," noted the head of the Hungarian Foreign Ministry.

Szijjártó stressed that Hungary "would not sacrifice the Transcarpathian Hungarians on the altar of world politics."

According to him, if integration into the structures of the EU and NATO is important for Ukraine, it must comply with its international obligations, in particular to revoke the ‘discriminatory’ education law against national minorities in Ukraine.

Only in this case, according to the Minister, Ukraine again can count on the full-fledged support of Hungary.

On September 28, the law "On Education" entered into force in Ukraine. The law, in particular, specifies that the educational process at schools will be provided only in the state language. Minority languages, including Russian, will be studied only until the fifth grade, and from 2020 onwards education in Ukraine will be entirely in Ukrainian.

The document has drawn sharp criticism from a number of countries, particularly Hungary. Budapest appealed to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to carry out an investigation of the Ukrainian law.

Later, Hungary blocked the meeting of the NATO-Ukraine Commission, which was to be held in December.

  Hungary, Ukraine, law on education, Szijjarto, NATO