Hungarian minister: UN should ensure identity protection of ethnic minorities
The United Nations must guarantee the protection of the identity of national minorities, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said on Wednesday in New York.
Speaking at a conference on the Minority Rights Declaration at the ongoing United Nations General Assembly session, Szijjártó said the protection of national identity should be recognized as a basic human right at the level international.
A foreign ministry statement quoted Szijjártó as saying that protecting the rights of ethnic minorities was a central part of Hungary’s foreign policy, which the government was ready to fight for in international forums.
Noting that a third of the Hungarian nation lives in communities outside Hungary, Szijjártó said “the principle of reciprocity should apply in this area”, and called for full respect for the rights of ethnic Hungarians” just as Hungary treats the ethnic minorities living in the country”. .
Securing the rights of ethnic minorities is an international rather than a national responsibility, Szijjártó said, calling for international safeguards to ensure minorities can preserve their identity. He noted that national identity does not always coincide with citizenship, adding that people belonging to ethnic minorities should “always be seen as constituents of the society in which they live”.