Hungary stops issuing passports to Ukrainians in Zakarpattia

The Hungarian consulate in Ukraine has stopped and will not resume the practice of issuing Hungarian citizenship to Ukrainian citizens inside its consulates in Zakarpattia and in Kyiv,said  Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin in response to a question he was asked in Milan about the outcome of the negotiations with Hungary.

Last week in Kyiv, Ukraine and Hungary held consular consultations, and their foreign ministers met in Milan on December 6. Klimkin confirmed that at these meetings, Hungary officially agreed to stop the previous passport practice.

“The Hungarians say that they are not issuing passports now and that they will not do this. This is already good, because I remember Szijjarto’s words, when he said that issuing passports in our territory does not contravene Ukrainian law. Now this has ended by definition,” Klimkin said.

The Ukrainian Foreign Minister admitted that the Hungarian legislation which makes it easier for Hungarians living abroad to acquire Hungarian citizenship is still in place, and the procedure may take place outside of Ukraine.

“Unfortunately I cannot guarantee that they will not try to continue issuing passports to the Hungarians of Zakarpattia in Hungary itself – we cannot monitor what they do in Hungarian territory. But for us it is absolutely a matter of principle – that they may not do this in their consulates in our territory,” the minister explained.

Klimkin also said that Ukraine has advised Hungary to sign an agreement to prevent double citizenship. However, no response on the matter has been received from Budapest.

In September this year, a video appeared online which showed Ukrainians being granted Hungarian citizenship. The people in the video, with a Hungarian flag in the background, were reading the text of the oath for Hungarian citizenship. The Hungarian diplomat then urged them to keep their citizenship secret from the Ukrainian authorities.

On October 4, the Hungarian consul in Berehove was declared a persona non grata. In response, Hungary announced that it was expelling the Ukrainian consul.

  Ukraine, Hungary, Zakarpattia, Szijjarto, Klimkin, Berehove