THE SLOVAK Foreign Affairs Ministry summoned Hungarian Ambassador Antal Heizer on March 26 to explain the recent goings-on in Mlynky, a village in Hungary that is 55 percent Slovak.
Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico mentioned at the cabinet session that same day that the local government in Mlynky intended to expel Slovak organisations from the village's House of Slovak Culture.
At the Foreign Affairs Ministry meeting, Roman Bužek, general director of the ministry's political section, told Hungarian chargé d'affaires Lajos Váradi that the Slovak government expects the Hungarian Cabinet to use all tools at its disposal to resolve the situation, ministry spokesman Ján Škoda informed the SITA newswire.
The situation began when Mlynky Mayor József Lendvai submitted a proposal that would force two Slovak associations to leave the local House of Slovak Culture by April 1. The proposal was approved by six local representatives, with two abstentions and two refusals to take part.
The organisations in question have been housed there for ten years, together with other organisations that will be allowed to stay. The expelled organisations will be provided with space in the local basic school. Lendvai intends to use the vacant rooms as office space.
The Foreign Affairs Ministry plans to ask Slovak representatives in international organisations to issue an objective report on the situation.
Fico stated that the government is prepared to put aside the necessary funds to create whatever conditions are necessary to assure the regular functioning of the organisations and institutions. He also said he believed the local government's decision to be a violation of the Slovak minority's rights.Fico expressed concern about other issues that have affected the village's Slovak minority, including the cessation of the village's bilingual magazine, the revamping of a cable television broadcast and the reduction of bonuses to Slovak teachers in the village.
31. Mar 2008 at 0:00 | Compiled by Spectator staff from press reports