January 18, 2020
Prior to parliamentary elections of 2018, the Fidesz Party led by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán competed with Jobbik Party in erecting as many monuments as possible to dictator Horthy (who supported the union with Germany during the WWII and occupied the Carpathian Ukraine in 1939). Those Hungarians having dual citizenship and living abroad received the letters in the name of Mr. Orbán calling them to register on the voting Internet platform "to determine the fate and the future of the states of the Carpathian basin". It seems that votes of the Transcarpathian Hungarians who keep Ukrainian, Hungarian, and sometimes even Russian passports in one drawer are rather valuable for ruling Hungarian Fidesz party. Viktor Orbán and his colleagues are ready to give budgetary support to a great many of public organizations or scientific institutions, not only Transcarpathian, against these votes. These two forces still compete to turn citizens of Ukraine of the Hungarian origin into their additional resource in political struggle for the power. The present Prime Minister uses an issue of Transcarpathian Hungarians to maintain rating, being afraid of opponents from Jobbik to seize an initiative. Such support of ruling party by foreign Hungarians is very generously funded from the state budget, which in turn attracts financing from the EU budget. Funds allocated for the support of some Hungarian organizations in Ukraine show that Fidesz knows well enough the importance of "buying" sympathies of foreign Hungarians. In particular, the government Resolution of 27.12.2017 No. 2061 "On Allocation of Grants to Some Foreign Organizations" in support of programs and activity of the foreign Hungarian organizations provides for the lump sum of 33,4 billion forints (above 103 billion euro). The major part of it - 2,54 billion forints (above 7 billion euro) would be assigned to support the Hungarian organizations of Transcarpathia. Hence Transcarpathia Hungarian Institute charity foundation received 2,2 billion forints (about 6,7 billion euro), while Society of the Hungarian Culture of Transcarpathia - 340 million forints (above 1 billion euro). In addition, in 2018 Budapest allocated 1 billion forints (about 3 billion euro) for implementation of "2018 - Year of Foreign Hungarian Families" program that provides support for the enterprises, healthcare institutions, trainings and organization of camps. In chase of foreign electorate Fidesz representatives resort even to more interesting innovations. For example, the government of Hungary adopted a Resolution of 02.01.18 No. 457 amending the Law XLV of 1994 "On military care" that entitles the foreign Hungarians including those living in Transcarpathia to compensations for relatives of the Hungarian servicemen who were seriously injured or died, particularly during the WWII. In this context, the prerequisites to be met by foreign Hungarians to receive additional funds from the Hungarian budget are more than illustrative! Compensation claimants are actually required to prove that their immediate family (spouses, parents, brothers) served in Royal Hungarian Army and died during military operations - from March, 1939 to October, 1944 (during the Hungarian occupation of Transcarpathia). This means they shall find and bring to the Hungarian consulates in the territory of Ukraine quite controversial documents proving that their relatives served in the Hungarian army, which not only waged a war on the side of fascist Germany, occupied the Ukrainian lands, but also became famous for their brutal treatment of Ukrainians in occupied territories. Applications for compensation shall be served to Hungary consulates in Uzhhorod and Beregovo. The only document you require is certificate of the foreign Hungarian. In this case, you may be granted a monthly pension that is 30% of the minimum Hungarian pension. All these facts show that, expressing such generosity to Hungarians of Transcarpathia and buying their votes, Orbán's government does not hesitate to boost the coffers at the expense of EU budget. Taking into account "grants" to the Hungarian diaspora, the European taxpayer helps Viktor Orbán to stay in power and pays his populism. In his turn, Viktor Orbán aptly uses EU democratic institutes in his mercenary interests. He does not hesitate to manipulate the issues, which are sensitive for the European Union, for example, migrant situation, makes advances to Russia, opposing prolongation of sanctions, and puts pressure upon Ukraine, putting on the stake progress rate of their EU and NATO accession. Perhaps in such a manner he wants to draw attention of the power players and escape political isolation.
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