In an interview with Pannon RTV, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán urged ethnic Hungarians living in Serbia’s Vojvodina region to vote in the country’s elections this coming weekend. He said the fate of Hungarians is influenced by all elections, including the one about to take place in Serbia.
The prime minister said the composition of the government in Hungary has an effect on all Hungarians in the Carpathian Basin, adding that it was also important for Hungarians beyond the border to elect the right leaders so that they could protect Hungarian interests. “So all elections are important.”
“One disadvantage Hungarians have is that we don’t have relatives; we’re a cultural and linguistic island in the middle of Europe,” the prime minister said. He added that his government’s mission was to preserve Hungarian culture.
In regards to the elections in Serbia, PM Orbán said the Alliance of Vojvodina Hungarians (VMSZ) was the only ethnic Hungarian party that had the experience, history and prestige that could be taken seriously. VMSZ has what it takes to unify the Hungarian community, he said, adding that István Pásztor, the party’s leader, had kept all his promises and fulfilled his end of every agreement with the Hungarian government. “So we have good reason to believe that as long as he’s the leader of the Hungarian community in Vojvodina, the relationship between the Hungarian government and Serbia’s Hungarian community will be based on trust,” he said.
PM Orbán also said the election will also have a fundamental impact on Hungarian-Serbian ties. Because of the history between the two countries, Hungary and Serbia need goodwill, trust and friendship to see each other as friends and allies, he said, adding that Serbia’s current government agreed with these sentiments. He said the end of hostilities between Hungarians and Serbs in Vojvodina had been a significant step forward for the two communities.
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