Hungarians calibrates minority issues in Romania

The current concern of the authorities managing the minorities issues is that of identifying what challenges are triggered with the crises, in the context in which, after the crisis generated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Romanian citizens of all nationalities are also confronted with an economic crisis, Secretary of State with the Department for Inter-Ethnic Relations within Romania’s Government Lacziko Eniko stated on Friday.

Attending the debate on „Diversity management in crisis situations”, within the ProEtnica Intercultural Festival in Sighisoara, which has now resumed after two pandemic years, Lacziko Eniko stressed that the minorities in Romania had been affected from several points of view, one of them being the limited access to information in their native language.

According to the Secretary of State, one of the challenges was whether such a public policy is related to the resolution of the crisis or whether attention is paid to the management of a situation, regardless of the crisis.

She drew attention to the fact that the protection of national minorities includes laws, during peacetime, which are broadly applied, „and it is obvious that when there is a crisis, these laws are neither monitored nor applied anymore, it is very difficult to move forward with a future project”.

The president of Divers Association, Maria Korek, believes that at the political level, the qualitative part must be taken into account, with reference to the last census.

„Do we have a plan, with those results, for what happens next? (…) in the issue of minorities, just having the figures does not help us, especially when these communities are numerically clearly in the minority, and the majority decides on them. And then the data may not help as much as a qualitative analysis of the situation, the analysis that also comes from the perspective of the majority, what is good, what is value for the majority, and for me this is missing”, Maria Korek said.

Meto Novak, advisor to the State Representative for Sorbians, the Ministry of Science, Research and Culture of Brandenburg, spoke about the minorities in Germany. „Regarding the census, in Germany we don’t ask about ethnic identity, about what language they use and so on. We also have this statistical problem, but they are not comparable. (…) We don’t know how many now speak the Sorbian language and where we want to get. So this is a problem, and everyone asks: „how many of you are there and what kind of resources they give you”. But in Germany there is not a problem of quality and there is a consensus between the state and the minorities”, he pointed out.

Meto Novak also said that the war in Ukraine affects minorities in Germany, in the context in which there are Russians and Ukrainians in this country. Regarding the refugees from Ukraine, he says that there is almost no data about them, because they are not a homogeneous group, as there are also other minorities who left the path of war.

The 18th edition of the ProEtnica Intercultural Festival in Sighisoara, which takes place between August 25 and 28, is organised in partnership with the Department for Interethnic Relations of the Romanian Government and the Mures County Council. The financier of the event is the Ministry of Culture. The municipality of Sighisoara supports the event from a logistical point of view and makes the public domain available.

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