Pahor, Others Condemn Orban Sharing “Greater Hungary” Map, PM Doesn’t

By , 07 May 2020, 20:20 PM Politics
Pahor, Others Condemn Orban Sharing “Greater Hungary” Map, PM Doesn’t Facebook

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STA, 7 May 2020 - President Borut Pahor and several parties have condemned Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban's posting a photo of a Greater Hungary map, with which he wished Hungarian secondary school students good luck in taking history exams.

Posted on Facebook on Wednesday, the photo shows a globe with Hungarian lands expanding into Slovenia and several other European countries, the territories which Hungary lost with the demise of the Austro-Hungarian Empire after WWI.

"It is understandable and right that the recurring postings of maps which could be understood as an expression of territorial claims are met with rejection and concern by the democratic public and politics, including me as the president of the republic," Pahor told the news portal 24ur.com when asked to comment on Orban's provocation.

He believes "it is because of such attempts that we should make an even greater effort to advocate ... respect and cooperation within nations and among nations".

The president also announced that he would draw this to the attention of his Hungarian counterpart Janos Ader's during an official visit planned for July.

The Foreign Ministry said that just like in the past, it would not comment on historical maps published abroad in different contexts, for instance for the purpose of research, education or exhibition, if they are not related to a clear intention or mention of revisionism.

The Ministry told the STA it "closely follows the contexts or the manners in which such historical maps are used and interpreted".

The office of the prime minister said where were historical maps in government offices, including an 1853 map of Slovenian lands that they say depicts "Greater Slovenia".

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Learn more about "Greater Slovenia" on Wikipedia

Social Democrat (SD) MP Matjaž Nemec, the chair of the foreign policy committee, voiced the expectation that Slovenian foreign policy will "react decisively...to show it is not a puppet of the Hungarian regime".

"When Orban, a friend of the ruling SDS, does not even conceal his plans any more. I expect a sharp response from all in government. Now is the time to show commitment to your country," he wrote on Twitter.

The coalition New Slovenia likewise said it expected "Slovenian diplomacy to react appropriately and warn the neighbouring Hungary that such 'history lessons' are unacceptable."

"Let's respect the borders we have today, and let's work to minimise their divisiveness in our shared European future," the party wrote on Twitter.

The opposition Left said in a press release that "such provocations which instigate nationalist feelings must be condemned".

"The Janez Janša government will not do so, because it counts on the help of the neighbouring regime. Its goal is clear: to institute an authoritarian conservative regime modelled on Orban's Hungary in our country."

This is not the first time that Orban posted a Greater Hungary map.

Last June, his office tweeted such a map to mark Hungarian Day of National Unity, commemorating the signing of the Treaty of Trianon, with which Hungary lost over 70% of its territory. In December, he posted a photo on Facebook showing his Fidezs party in a meeting under the same map.

Orban's June 2019 incident was condemned by Pahor, the Foreign Ministry, then Prime Minister Marjan Šarec, and several parties, including New Slovenia (NSi), which is now in government, while Janša's Democrats (SDS) said they would not comment.

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