Foreign affairs minister Mikulas Dzurinda was supposed to head for Budapest with fresh new version of the laws on the national language and on dual citizenship, but because of disagreements in the coalition, he is going empty-handed.
Dzurinda is killing two birds with one stone, by taking part in the Budapest Marathon on Sunday, before holding meetings with Hungarian officials on Monday. The new revisions were supposed to be ammunition for Dzurinda in his talks in Hungary, to prove that a government priority was to improve strained relations between the countries.
It was not to be, though. A stale-mate situation arose in the coalition over the State Language Act, with the SaS party insisting on retaining some fines for breaches of the law, while Most-Hid is demanding their complete abolition.
Regarding the issue of dual citizenship, the Christian democrats KDH blocked talks by proposing fines for ethnic Hungarians who would utilise dual citizenship in Hungary without ‘legitimate reasons’.
Improving relations with Hungary and ethnic Hungarians in Slovakia isn’t something that will happen overnight, especially with the attitudes of certain politicians on both sides. So Mikulas Dzurinda should get ready for another marathon, one that will test even his stamina.