The Szekler people are subjects of international law!

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The peace process ending the First World War has cut off Szeklerland from Hungary, placing it under the jurisdiction of a foreign country, Romania. At the same time, however, the Szekler peoples, together with Transylvanian Saxons, gained recognition as subjects of international law.

Section 11 of the Paris Minority Treaty of 9 December 1919, concluded between the Allied and Associated Powers and Romania, stated that Romania will ensure that the Transylvanian Szekler and Saxon communities will be given self determination in religious and educational matters under the supervision of the Romanian State.

Romania’s constitution, adopted in 1952, reaffirmed this status, by establishing the Hungarian Autonomous Province in Szeklerland, stipulating that: "The Romanian People's Republic assures administrative-territorial autonomy for the Hungarian population in the Szekler regions where they live compactly"[1]. The administrative subunits of the province, the "Szekler regions", roughly corresponded to the territories of the Szekler seats.

Nearly a hundred years after the recognition of the international legal status of the Szekler people, we note that the Saxon community went nearly extinct, but we, the Szeklers, still live in the same area as in 1919 and 1952.

We must remember, how 50 years ago, on 16 February 1968, the (Maros) Hungarian Autonomous Region was abolished through the actions of Nicolae Ceausescu. Actions that both the Hungarian and international human rights movements have been indifferent to. On this day, the Grand National Assembly adopted the Law 2/1968 on the County System, which is still in force to this day.

It is also important to emphasize the anti-democratic path the Romanian public opinion has taken in respect of the Hungarian question, under the conditions of democracy. Today, when the issue of administrative reform arises, leading politicians compete in denying the cultural, linguistic and ethnic criteria for the designation of administrative boundaries. All the while even the unlawful legislation of 1968, adopted fifty years ago, states that the counties are created with respect to geographical, economic, social and ethnic circumstances, in light of the cultural connections and traditions of the population! [2]

The Romanian government, the parliament, the head of state should explain this downturn. After all, they are the ones responsible for it.

The Szekler peoples, aware of the fact that they are subjects of international law, aware of the European practice of territorial autonomies, as well as Romania's international commitments, based on the will of the Szeklers already expressed through referendum, and based on the pro-autonomy decisions of 63 local municipalities, will not give up on Szeklerland’s territorial autonomy. They demand the restoration of a right that has already been recognized by the Romanian state.

Izsák Balázs

President of the Szekler National Council

February 12, 2018, Marosvásárhely



[1]În Republica Populară Română se asigură autonomie administrativ-teritorială populației maghiare din raioanele secuiești, unde ea formează o masă compactă.”

2 “Județul este alcătuit din orașe și comune - unități de bază ale organizării administrativ-teritoriale a țării - în funcție de condițiile geografice, economice și social-politice, etnice și de legăturile culturale și tradiționale ale populației.”