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SMK proposes to amend Education Act due to textbooks dispute

The ethnic-Hungarian SMK party is proposing to amend the Education Act over a involving school textbooks that do not contain the Hungarian place names alongside the official Slovak names, SMK MPs József Berényi and László Szigeti announced on October 7.

The ethnic-Hungarian SMK party is proposing to amend the Education Act over a involving school textbooks that do not contain the Hungarian place names alongside the official Slovak names, SMK MPs József Berényi and László Szigeti announced on October 7.

The textbooks were one of the issues that Hungarian Foreign Affairs Minister Kinga Gőncz brought up during her meeting with Juraj Migaš, Slovak ambassador to Hungary, last week in Budapest. The SMK wants to ensure that the place names be included in schoolbooks that will be used among ehtnic-Hungarian schoolchildren, the TASR newswire wrote. The party has already submitted the proposal to parliament, which will discuss it at its next session on October 21.

The SMK points to Article 10 of the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages, which states that "the Parties undertake to allow and/or encourage (...) the use or adoption, if necessary in conjunction with the name in the official language(s), of traditional and correct forms of place-names in regional or minority languages", as well as the General Agreement on Protection of Ethnic Minorities, which reads that "the parties will strive to introduce traditional geographical names, names of streets ... in the language of the minority, if it is interested in this". TASR

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
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