Following Wednesday's Cabinet session, Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico told journalists that he rejected all six requirements made by his Hungarian counterpart, Ferenc Gyurcsany, repeated in a letter after their meeting in Komárno last month.
Fico called the requests unacceptable and said that the rights of ethnic minorities in Slovakia are already protected through the country’s constitution and laws. According to Fico, Slovakia’s system is one of the best in Europe. The prime minister said he saw no reason to adopt any special legislation for ethnic minorities.
He said that Slovakia gives significant sums of money to Hungarian schools and culture so there is no need for providing further benefits to the Hungarian ethnic minority in Slovakia.
Gyurcsany's proposed establishment of an ombudsman for ethnic minorities in Slovakia was also rejected by Fico, who reiterated that the existing protection of minority rights is sufficient. He added that Hungary's requirement to lift a ban on the use of foreign country’s flags during local sporting events is unacceptable. Foreign flags and state symbols are now only allowed at international matches. SITA
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
3. Dec 2008 at 19:00