Jobbik deputy-Floor Leader Márton Gyöngyösi's address to the Council of Europe

Saturday, January 31, 2015

Member of the Hungarian delegation Márton Gyöngyösi's address to the Council of Europe Assembly on January 27 where he drew attention to the humanitarian situation of Ukrainian refugees and displaced persons.

"Madam President, Ladies and Gentlemen!

First of all I would like to congratulate to rapporteur Mr. Sheridan for the enormous effort he put into the report assessing the humanitarian situation of Ukrainian refugees and displaced persons as well as his detailed observations and findings regarding the Ukrainian situation. The findings indicate that Ukraine is heading for a humanitarian crisis - if not a humanitarian catastrophe. In fact, the situation is even worse than that, if we take into account - as stated in the report - that the figures often underestimate the real situation, which escalates with alarming rate.

Behind the statistics and sheer numbers there are enormous personal tragedies that I had the opportunity to observe personally without being blinded by the distortions of propaganda campaigns and biased political actors. At the end of last year, I had the opportunity to visit the city of Donetsk and Gorlovka where I could see with my own eyes the prevailing conditions. I talked directly to residents of the region and I heard heartbreaking war stories from ordinary citizens. In addition, in my own country, we also face a growing number of ethnic Transcarpathian refugees forced to leave their homes; many of these refugees are men between the ages of 20 and 60 fleeing Ukraine due to force-drafting.

Until about a year ago, Transcarpathian Hungarians, Ruthenians, Polish, Romanians and possibly other nationalities including Russians in Donbass were loyal citizens of Ukraine. However, the Ukrainian government has lost the confidence of its own citizens in record time. The actions of the Ukrainian government in the post-coup era prevented the establishment of trust among its own citizens - the government threatened nationalities with chauvinist rhetoric, it fomented war among its own citizens, withdrew the language law, redrew electorate boundaries, deprived the population of electricity and tap water, reduced pensions and other social benefits, and blocked humanitarian aid from entering certain areas. All these steps further escalated the crisis.

The international community's reaction to the Ukrainian crisis was inadequate. The views of the majority of my fellow EU representatives are quite hypocritical when try to blame Russia alone for the outbreak and escalation of the Ukrainian conflict. We all know that the United States and its European allies openly interfered in the internal affairs of Ukraine at the onset of the conflict, and they still doing so today. Offering hopes of EU and NATO membership to Ukraine is obviously irresponsible and provocative in every respect, which will further escalate the crisis.

Ladies and gentlemen, what can be done to solve this terrible conflict?

First of all, we have to sit down and discuss the situation calmly without bias. The tragedies occurred in the past year need to be investigated impartially and all sides must take responsibility for their actions - the Odessa massacre, the bombing of Donetsk and Mariupol, the discovered mass graves in Donetsk region and sexual abuses and other human rights violations in the region. It is high time to think about the decentralization and federalization of Ukraine where national minorities can manage their own affairs in accordance with democratic principles.

( – translated by


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