The Threat of the Anti-Hungarian Administrative Reform has not yet Passed

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In May 2017, the lawsuit initiated by Balázs Izsák, president of the Szekler National Council against the Anti Discrimination Council, former president Traian Băsescu, former Prime Minister Victor Viorel Ponta, George Crin Laurențiu Antonescu as well as Liviu Nicolae Dragnea, has been concluded. The Bucharest Court of Appeal has dismissed the action brought before them by the president of the Szekler National Council.

The Cause of the lawsuit was a public and decisive promise made by the above-mentioned politicians, namely, that after the Romanian administrative reform, there will be no region in Romania with Hungarian majority. Considering that there are many regions with historical and cultural traditions in Romania, where Hungarian communities have always formed the majority, this declaration made by influential representatives of the state was a promise of discrimination against Hungarian communities. The president of the Szekler National Council (hereinafter, “the Plaintiff”), turned to the Anti-Discrimination Council, which defended this discriminatory manifestation of the public authorities, referring to the fundamental human right of freedom of expression. This decision was made on 2 October 2013. The Plaintiff turned to the Court of Appeal in Bucharest, citing the listed representatives of the responsible Romanian public authorities. The Court has dismissed the lawsuit on 2 October 2014 and subsequently the appeal in May this year.

            Both the Anti-Discrimination Council and the Court of Appeal have clearly disregarded the fact that fundamental human rights, such as the right to freedom of expression, belong to individuals and not to the authorities of the state. The Plaintiff refuted all claims that referred to the practice of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), as the jurisprudence of the ECHR was meant to protect the rights of individuals from state authorities, and never the other way around. The Court of Appeal also refused the Plaintiff’s request to refer to the Court of Justice of the European Union, even though the Community Law provides this possibility for all cases where a court of a member state must interpret EU legal documents. The applicant's action was based on EU Directive 2000/43 on the application of the principle of equal treatment between persons irrespective of racial or ethnic origin, and the court did not even try to hide the fact that they will make a politically motivated decision in this process.

The Plaintiff pointed out to both the Anti-Discrimination Council and the Court of Appeal, that the senior officials of the Romanian state authorities did not only promise the discrimination of the Hungarian community by influencing and directing Romania’s administrative reform, but violated Romania’s international commitments as well.

The response of the defendants, as well as the final court decision - the justification of which we did not yet receive - clearly indicates that Romania has not given up on an administrative reform that follows an assimilation policy and is openly anti-Hungarian.

This is a warning to us all. We must be prepared for this, by any means at our disposal!

 

Sepsiszentgyörgy, 25 June 2017.

Press office of the Szekler National Council

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