World Bulletin/News Desk
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has renewed a plea for ethnic Hungarians in neighbouring Ukraine to be granted autonomy even after a similar call last week drew a diplomatic backlash.
"Ukraine can be neither stable, nor democratic if it does not give its minorities, including Hungarians, their due," Orban said on public television late on Friday. "That is, dual (Hungarian) citizenship, collective rights and autonomy."
Orban, re-elected in a landslide win last month, was reaffirming a call for autonomy for about 200,000 ethnic Hungarians in western Ukraine that he made a week ago as he was sworn in as prime minister.
His comments prompted Kiev to summon the Hungarian ambassador for an explanation on Tuesday and drew criticism from regional heavyweight Poland, an ally of Hungary within the Visegrad Four grouping of central European nations.
On Wednesday, Foreign Minister Janos Martonyi sought to ease diplomatic tensions by saying that Hungary, a member of the European Union and NATO, was not demanding territorial autonomy for Ukraine's ethnic Hungarian minority.
Many Hungarians today view the 1920 Treaty of Trianon as a national tragedy because it took away two-thirds of the country's territory and left millions of ethnic Hungarians living in what are now Romania, Slovakia, Ukraine and Serbia.
Orban's government granted ethnic Hungarians in neighbouring countries citizenship shortly after it took office in 2010, as part of efforts to restore a battered sense of national pride.
The prime minister has won popularity at home by reaching out to Hungarians beyond the country's borders who were allowed to vote in the national election for the first time in April.
He has never suggested reuniting the lost territories with Hungary, but his stance has irked governments in some neighbouring countries.
Orban, a former dissident against Communist rule, said that Hungary stood by Ukraine in its conflict with Russia, which annexed Crimea in March saying it needed to protect ethnic Russians there.
"Ukraine's territorial integrity was infringed. In violation of international law, Russia has launched an action against Ukraine. We need to support Ukraine in this matter," he said.
Orban said a new Ukraine was taking shape and important decisions would be made after a presidential election set for May 25, meaning the time was ripe for Hungary to "voice its expectations."
He said autonomy could take many forms, but declined to go into more detail, adding it was up to ethnic Hungarians in Ukraine to decide what form of autonomy would be best for them.
"But whichever they stand up for, they need to know, as well as the Ukrainians, that the Hungarian state will throw its full weight behind ethnic Hungarians' push for autonomy in Ukraine," he said.
Prosecutors had earlier accused the 16 defendants of involvement in violence, riots and attacks on policemen following Morsi's ouster in July last year.
The insurgents stormed Mubi on Wednesday. Gunfire has been heard in the town ever since, witnesses said
Some people were being evacuated from the surrounding area as a precaution, but there were no reports of damage or injuries.
Some Scots feel the party, which has since launched a search for a new leader in Scotland, has lost touch with voters and failed to offer a distinctive vision for Scotland.
Jordanian Information Minister and government spokesman Mohamed al-Momani said Israel's measures in Jerusalem also ran counter to the international humanitarian law and the Geneva Convention.
The controversial government-proposed amendment would increase to three the maximum number of five-year presidential terms available to a single individual, opening the door for Compaore – in power since 1987 – to seek reelection next year.
Atifete Jahjaga had been invited to take part in a meeting in Belgrade of the Trilateral Commission, a biannual gathering of influential business leaders, academics and policymakers
ISIL militants took the men from their villages to the city of Ramadi and killed them on Wednesday night and buried them, Iraqi officials say
Since Oct. 20 the Syrian military has staged at least 769 attacks including barrel bombings in many areas of Syria, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights
Berlin sends military experts to Erbil to explore ways of better supporting peshmerga troops against ISIL
Opposition commander says more sophisticated weapons needed to defeat ISIL in Syrian Kurdish town Kobani
Israeli authorities closed the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex – for the first time since 1967 – and gunned down a Palestinian suspected of killing a rabbi
Tambuwal defected from the ruling party to the opposition on Wednesday
Hickox, who tested negative for the virus after returning from treating Ebola patients in Sierra Leone, said that she plans to take the issue to court if Maine did not lift the quarantine
Eyewitnesses said scores of Palestinian students had hurled stones and empty bottles at an Israeli position near Birzeit, a town in northern Ramallah.
The 50 detainees were mainly Syrian but included nine Lebanese and one Palestinian, an army statement said.