Romania and Slovakia lodge complaints against Orbán’s speech referring to ‘territories torn from Hungary’

Prime Minister Orbán speaks at Tusnádfürdő, Romania, on July 22. (Prime Minister's Press Oiffce, Vivien Cher Benko)
By Dénes Albert
3 Min Read

Romania and Slovakia have lodged diplomatic protests against Hungary following Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s speech in Tusnádfürdő, Transylvania, on July 22.

This comes freshly on the heels of similar protests from Czechia Prime Minister Petr Fiala, who issued a response to Orbán after the Hungarian leader accused Czechia of abandoning the Visegrád Group and getting into bed with the EU federalists.

The Romanian foreign ministry summoned the Hungarian ambassador to Bucharest for what the Romanian government saw as a disregard for Romanian requests made ahead of the speech. Nine days ahead of the speech, the Romanian ambassador to Budapest verbally informed the Hungarian foreign ministry of topics Orbán should steer clear of in his speech.

In the speech, Orbán mentioned the Romanian request, saying: “They say not to talk about non-existent administrative territorial units in Romania. I wondered what they might mean. I think they mean Transylvania and Szeklerland. But we have never claimed that these are Romanian territorial units,” Orbán said.

Romania also asked Orbán not to “shine a bad light” on Western values, to which Orbán said in his speech: “If you are in European politics, as I am in European politics, Western values today mean three things: migration, LGBTQ, and war. My dear Romanian friends, these do not need to be portrayed in a bad light, they are portrayed in a bad light all by themselves.”

After the Hungarian ambassador to Bucharest’s appearance at the Romanian foreign ministry, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said “the tone and atmosphere of the meeting can be described as calm and polite. What the Romanian deputy state secretary said was practically a repetition of the points made in the previous message, this time updated after the speech.”

Slovakia also summoned the Hungarian ambassador for a part of the speech they perceived as revisionist, saying that “any direct or indirect challenge to the territorial integrity or sovereignty of Slovakia is absolutely unacceptable to us.”

They were referring to the part of Orbán’s speech in which he spoke about “territories torn from Hungary.” The Slovak ministry said “Czechoslovakia (and later Slovakia) or Hungary are successor states to Austria-Hungary. They could therefore not have torn anything from present-day Hungary.”

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