Ethnic Hungarians boo Romanian president

BAILE TUSNAD

Romanian President Traian Basescu was treated to boos and hisses as he spoke during an open university event organized for his country’s ethnic Hungarians. Those gathered in the town of Baile Tusnad reacted negatively to his statement that Romania is a national, united, sovereign and independent state.

Basescu first received the boos when he said that autonomy should be equal in all parts of the country, including in the region of Transylvania, where ethnic Hungarians live.

After he quoted from the Romanian Constitution to say that the country is “a national, united, sovereign and independent state”, there was another expression of disapproval.

He then proceeded to twice again repeat the same quotation, and added that he believed that dialogue was possible, but that he recognizes that those present “do not know it”.

Laszlo Tokes, a MEP and leader of the National Council of Transylvania Hungarians, told Realitatea TV that it is “normal and natural that the president was booed because of his statement repeated three times”.

He then went on to say that “he [the president] will be booed every time he makes the same quote”, because, as Tokes put it, “his statement cannot change the realty”.

According to a Beta news agency report, Tokes is one of Romania’s ethnic Hungarian figures who engage the most in advocating “independence and autonomy” for the Transylvania districts with a Hungarian majority.

The 20th open university in the town was also attended by former Hungarian PM and opposition leader Viktor Orban, the Hungarian Parliament’s Foreign Policy Commission chairman, and other Hungarian officials and citizens.

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