On Tuesday, the Romanian Foreign Ministry summoned Hungary’s ambassador in Bucharest to inform him that all 20 national minorities in Romania are free to use their symbols, but there is no territorial administrative unit called “Szeklerland” in the country that would create a legal basis for the use of a specific official symbol.
The Romanian foreign ministry’s statement strongly disapproves of a Facebook post by Zsolt Németh, chairman of the Hungarian parliament’s foreign affairs committee on Monday, which says that “Romania would allegedly restrict the right to use the flag of the so-called Szeklerland.”
Németh shared an earlier photo of the Szekler flag displayed on the town hall of Budafok-Tétény on his social media page and wrote under the picture: “The Szekler flag will be flown on the facades of Hungarian public institutions as long as the Romanian state allows its free use without restrictions throughout the territory of Romania. Go, Szeklers! Go, Transylvania!”
The Székelys or Szeklers are a subgroup of the Hungarian ethnic minority in Romania, inhabiting the zone informally known as Szeklerland where they outnumber Romanians. Although the Szekler flag is a recent creation designed in 2004, it is based on the Sun and Moon symbols used by the Szeklers since the early Middle Ages. The same symbols also appear on the Romanian coat of arms.