No discrimination against Roma in Hungary, says state secy

Washington, May 25 (MTI) – Hungary rejects several statements in the human rights chapter of the US Department of State’s country report for 2011 because there is no discrimination in Hungary against the Roma, Hungary’s state secretary for government communications told MTI by phone in New York late on Thursday.

Zoltan Kovacs said, however, that Hungary would respect conclusions of the report. He added that the Hungarian government had maintained continuous dialogue about the issues raised in the document.


The US Department of State released its analysis of nearly 200 reports on Thursday. The report on Hungary said discrimination against the Roma and violent right-wing extremism represented human rights problems.


“Our view is that there is no discrimination against the Roma in Hungary, Kovacs said.


The report quoted isolated negative examples, whereas the Hungarian government supports the social inclusion of the Roma with systematic and comprehensive programmes, for instance to promote employment for the community.


European justice commissioner Viviane Reding recently expressed her appreciation of Hungary which initated during its European Union presidency the coordination of Roma strategies by member countries, Kovacs said.


The Hungarian government protects minority rights and resolutely stands up against extremists, Kovacs said. He added that Hungary had amended regulations on hate speech and uniformed marches.