Slovak Government Embraces Ultra-Nationalists,
Excludes Hungarian Coalition Party
Hungarian Human Rights Foundation (HHRF) is deeply concerned over the
inclusion of right wing extremists in the Slovak government and the exclusion
of the Hungarian Coalition Party, which has a proven track-record of responsible
governance and longstanding commitment to democracy and reform. Prime
Minister Robert Fico has chosen to send the wrong message to the peoples
of Slovakia and the world. His action undermines the efforts of democratic-minded
forces in the country which promote tolerance, respect for human and minority
rights, and it willfully alienates the international support Slovakia
has earned over the past 8 years. HHRF urges all concerned governments,
political and public figures, human rights organizations and the general
public to unequivocally protest the composition of the Slovak government
and put Slovakia's leadership on notice regarding human and minority rights
compliance. As it has done for the past 30 years, HHRF will closely monitor
and report on the actions of the new Slovak government.
* * *
a statement issued July 8, the Hungarian Coalition
Party (HCP), representing Slovakia's 600,000-strong Hungarian community, expressed
grave concern about the ultra-nationalistic orientation of the new Slovak government
formed July 3 and said it will oppose any anti-minority step the government
takes as well as those aimed at reversing hard-won reforms. As the most consistently
pro-European party in Slovakia, HCP recalled that reforms and euro-Atlantic
integration would not have been achieved without its active support and participation
in both governments between 1998 and 2006.
HCP received its highest support to date at the June 17 parliamentary elections
with 11.7 percent of the vote, the party was snubbed by SMER president Robert
Fico, leader of the winning social democrats. Instead, Fico chose as
coalition partners Ján Slota, president of the extreme
right-wing Slovak National Party (SNS) and thrice prime minister Vladimir
Meciar, head of the Peoples' Party-Movement for Democratic Slovakia.
The Slovak National Party is well-known for its xenophobic and ultra-nationalistic
views on minorities, especially against Hungarians and Roma [a compilation of
Ján Slota's radical statements follows].
Warnings from Major European Political Leaders
July 4, the Socialist Group in the European Parliament unanimously condemned
the SMER leader's formation of a coalition with the ultra-nationalist SNS and
overwhelmingly called for SMER's suspension from the Party of European Socialists
(PES). The move came after PES President Poul Nyrup Rasmussen
sent two letters to Fico emphasizing that "the composition of the coalition
raises many concerns regarding the respect of human rights, in particular the
rights of ethnic minorities, as well as commitments to democracy, to the European
Union and European values and policies" and that the "Slovak Re-public
risks being totally isolated from and condemned by the international community."
On July 5, Rasmussen reiterated his recommendation to suspend SMER at the next
meeting of the PES Presidency "as long as SNS is in Government in Slovakia."
The Chairman of the largest parliamentary group in the European Parliament,
the European People's Party (Christian Democrats) and European Democrats (EPP-ED),
also expressed astonishment "that the most extreme xenophobic party is to
be part of the next government." "This development is not justified
by any lack of suitable partners in the Slovak Parliament and it can only harm
the real interests of Slovakia," declared Hans-Gert Poettering,
already on June 30th. At the request of the eight members of the EPP-ED Slovak
Delegation, on July 6, the EPP created a monitoring group to closely follow
political developments in Slovakia reminding that "a policy respectful of
minorities and based on political dialogue is the only way to achieve a stable
* * *
Key Ministries to watch in the new
SMER holds eleven, SNS three and LS-HZSDS two
ministerial posts in the new Slovak government. Previously, the Hungarian Coalition
Party held key positions in the ministries of agriculture, construction, regional
development and environmental protection, a sore point for extremists. The critical
areas effecting minorities where reversals in policies may occur are:
Deputy Prime Minister Dušan Caplovic
(SMER). Portfolio consists of European Affairs, Human and Minority Rights. This
post was previously held by the Hungarian Coalition Party (HCP). Caplovic is
one of SMER's most nationalistic politicians known for repeated and virulent
anti-minority pronouncements in the Slovak Parliament. He is the number one
man to watch for future anti-minority measures, warns HCP Party President Béla
Minister for Education, Ján Mikolaj
(SNS). This critical post for minorities is now held by a Slota loyalist who
submitted an anti-Hungarian resolution in the parliament last year. During Meciar's
1994-1998 government, this post was also held by an SNS education minister,
Eva Slavkovská, who "destroyed whatever she could in
minority schools," emphasizes HCP President Bugár.
Minister for Culture Marek Madaric
(SMER) belongs to the nationalistic wing of the party. Apparently, Madaric strongly
opposed even mentioning the Hungarian Coalition Party as a possible
coalition candidate, says Bugár who swore in new MEPs on July 4 as departing
president of the Slovak Parliament. Madaric has been responsible for media relations
within SMER and was a member of the Slovak Television Council 2002– 2004.
Minister for Construction and Regional Development,
Marián Jánušek (SNS). As Deputy Mayor of
the town where Slota is Mayor, Jánušek is Slota's right-hand man
even though his demeanor is milder.
for Agriculture, Miroslav Jurena (HZDS). Along with regional
development, these two ministries are vital for the 600,000-strong Hungarian
minority which is primarily engaged in agriculture.
A Selection of Public
Ján Slota, President of the Slovak National Party (SNS)
"I have to tell you a short story. Back in 1248 a Frank bishop visited
the Carpathian Basin and he said: 'As I was scanning this country, I was wondering
how God could give such a beautiful land to such ugly people. He meant the 'old
Hungarians.' because they were Mongoloid types with crooked legs and they owned
such disgusting horses. Actually, small horses. This is what the bishop said,
it is written...exactly, it is written word by word...and now, after more than
800 years those 'Mongoloids' have somehow disappeared...I don ´t know
who showed them how to be civilized. But I think unfortunately it was the Slavic
blood...unfortunately. And I really don't know if these Hungarians, who like
to say about themselves that they are Hungarians, are really Hungarians. I think
90 percent of them have Slavic blood and maybe 10 percent, or maybe just a tenth
of a percent has the 'old Hungarian' blood. "
television debate a few days before the
June 17, 2006 parliamentary elections in Slovakia
the Slovak nationalist party is extremist, then Hungarians are radioactively
extremists, they radiate more than Chernobyl. The best solution would be to
entomb them with cement."
Szó, June 10, 2005
are the cancer of the Slovak nation, without delay we need to remove them from
the body of the nation."
Szó, April 15, 2005
we Slovaks want [the Hungarians] to return... and teach us the Lord's Prayer
in Hungarian? No way! We will jump into our tanks, and we will go and flatten
Budapest... We will fight, fight for our land, we will fight for every square
meter. We won't give even a square centimeter to those Hungarian assholes...
Oh, and pardon us. We Slovaks are all racists. And for that reason I say - my
brothers, we still have our armaments factories and we still know how to make
tanks. Very good tanks..." "This is what we really want? Slovaks?
Having it back again? Having us hanged again at lamp-posts, that we will have
to learn our prayers in Hungarian again? No way!"
At a Slovak
National Party rally on March 5, 1999
the Hungarian Coalition Party...
am sick when I see that the Hungarians set the pace in the Slovak Parliament."
It is "pathetic" that the most stable party in the government is the Hungarian
Szó, May 20, 2005
activities of the Hungarian Coalition Party are enough to cause even the coldest
Slovak corpse buried 200 years ago in Slovak ground to wake up, jump out of
his coffin and finally slap someone in the face."
of the Week
The Slovak Spectator, January 24-January 30, 2005
is an angel with the devil in its flesh." Slovak National Party (SNS) leader
Ján Slota describing the Hungarian Coalition Party (SMK)
of the Week
The Slovak Spectator, November 8 - 14,2004
punishment of prostitution): "...those hideous, mostly Gypsies who just
stand there...they should simply get beaten with a night stick..."
June 8, 2006
someone is unable to buy a condom or control his lust, the state should buy
him a condom." Ján Slota, head of the Real Slovak National Party,
offers his thoughts on population growth within the Roma minority.
of the Week
The Slovak Spectator, March 8 - 14, 2004
On February 21 (2003), PSNS boss Ján Slota announced his party would
present parlia-ment with a draft law mid-March laying out how Roma men would
be offered Sk20,000 (480 euro) in return for their fertility.
"I think we would increase the income [of Roma] if they got Sk 20,000 for
just one little cut. I think a lot of Roma would volunteer for this," Slota
"There is nothing wrong with it. Families will be free to choose and improve
their social situa-tion," said PSNS spokesman Rafael Rafaj. […]
Spectator, March 3, 2003
dealers must immediately be shot, [Deputy PM for Economy Ivan] Mikloš immediately
fired, Hungarians forbidden, Gypsies destroyed, Americans spat on, and the 17
secret service agents sicced on Slota recalled. Is that enough?" Ján
Slota, head of the Real Slovak National Party, in a tirade as poll results show
his party well below the margin needed to enter parliament after September elections.
of the Week
The Slovak Spectator, July 22, 2002
August 4, 2000, SNS Member of Parliament Vítazoslav Moric called the
Roma "idiots" and "mental retards" and recommended they
be put on reservations. Moric was stripped of his parliamentary immunity from
prosecution in September, clearing the way for charges of inciting racial hatred
to be brought against him.
Slovak Spectator, December 25, 2000
are negativist only in saying that parasites have to be eliminated, and parasites
are simply those who don't want to work, and the fact that among those people
are 95% of all Gypsies is just reality."
in The Slovak Spectator, September 24, 1998
Slota, Chairman of the Slovak National Party (SNS), a member of the ruling coalition,
has said that the best policy for Romani is "a long whip in a small yard."
Slovak Spectator, April 9, 1998
the Fascist Jozef Tiso…
called Tiso "one of the greatest sons of the Slovak nation" [The Slovak
Spectator, February 28-March 5, 2000] and on February 17, 2000, 40 of the 41
city council members in ilina/Zsolna, where Slota is mayor, voted to dedicate
a plaque honoring Tiso. As the leader of Slovakia's 1939-45 Nazi-puppet state,
Jozef Tiso was responsible for deporting between 60,000 and 70,000 Jews to concentration
camps and was executed as a war criminal in 1946.
have no problem with them if they remain in the shadows and just make their
disgusting sexual orgies."
June 8, 2006
By the National Council of the Hungarian Coalition Party
On the post-2006 Parliamentary Election Situation
Bratislava, July 8, 2006
Council of the Hungarian Coalition Party (NC-HCP) is pleased to acknowl-edge
that as a result of the 2006 parliamentary elections, the Hungarian Coalition
Party (HCP) achieved its highest percentage of votes to date, 11.7 percent,
while the percentage of Hungari-ans in the country is only 9.7 percent. Consequently,
the party will retain its number of mandates in the Parliament.
that, in terms of the number of absolute votes, the party has lost supporters
does not escape NC-HCP's attention either. Therefore, NC-HCP calls upon the
national leadership, in cooperation with the county chairmen, to analyze the
election process and submit its report to the NC-HCP by September 30, 2006.
notes that as a viable political force the party leadership did everything possible
so that HCP be part of a new government. The NC-HCP regrets that despite a 40
percent com-bined result for the three parties comprising the EPP [European
People's Party, trans.] [HCP, SDKU (Slovak Democratic and Christian Union),
KDH (Christian Democratic Union)], the group was incapable of forming a government.
was not NC-HCP's goal, it would have accepted the large coalition option with
SMER as well. In this case, there would have been opportunity to continue the
positive devel-opments, and correct the failings of the past four years, in
which HCP would have been an active partner. The members of NC-HCP were shocked,
however, by SMER's politicking and the party national leadership's decision
whereby, of all the possible combination of parliamentary parties, they chose
the worst. NC-HCP is gravely concerned by the nationalistic orientation of the
new government and authorizes the party's leadership and parliamentary representatives
to oppose, in the strongest possible manner, each and every step the new government
takes to reverse reforms and against minorities. NC-HCP considers it important
to regularly inform international public opinion about all negative steps the
new government takes. Domestically, it will use every legal means at its disposal
to protect the development of Slovakia's Hungarian community and the economic
interests of Slovakia's southern region. The Party offers protection to all
civil servants, especially those of Hungarian ethnicity, who are illegally dismissed
from their posts by the new powers-that-be. The party emphatically states that
only governance and minority policies reflective of the 21st Century's spirit
are acceptable. HCP will do everything possible to prevent a reversal of conditions
in Slovakia to the pre-1998 state.
political body of the most consistently pro-European party in Slovakia, NC-HCP
finds it important to emphasize that reforms and Euro-Atlantic integration would
not have been achieved without the active support and participation of Slovakia's
Hungarian party in both governments between 1998 and 2006.
according to NC-HCP, Slovakia should proceed on the road set out after 1998
and characterized by adherence to democratic rules of conduct; respect for human
and minority rights; and realization of stable and predictable economic and