Ukraine's Foreign Ministry demands change of passage about Ukraine in Hungarian textbook

September 07. 2022. – 03:15 PM



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"The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry demands the immediate correction of false information about Ukraine in geography textbooks for Hungarian eighth-grade students" Oleg Nikolenko, a spokesman for the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry told Interfax, HVG reports.

Nikolenko added that on Tuesday, Ukrainian diplomats in Hungary went to the Hungarian Foreign Ministry for talks about the geography textbook. During the meeting it was established that the section on Ukraine in the textbook was unacceptable, as it contained distorted facts about the country. At the meeting they demanded that the false information in the textbook be corrected.

Telex had previously reported that one of the Hungarian geography textbooks for eighth-graders writes about Crimea, which was occupied by Russian forces in 2014 and then annexed to Russia following a referendum that was not recognised by the international community, from a more than permissive, one might say pro-Russian, point of view:

The majority of the country’s population are Ukrainians, but there is a significant percentage of Russians living in the country’s Eastern territories. In the Crimean peninsula, for example, they constitute a majority. The two East Slavic languages (Russian and Ukrainian) are similar. In the parts of the country where Russian nationals live, a fifth of the population speaks a mixed Russian-Ukrainian language. In spite of this, there are frequent conflicts between the two ethnic groups, and their opposition has resulted in an armed conflict for the Crimean peninsula.”

The book’s pre-2018 edition has a completely different passage in the chapter in question and says that “Russia absorbed the Crimean Peninsula” and states that neither the UN nor the EU recognize the breakaway “republics” of Donetsk and Luhansk. The new, 2018 edition however, doesn’t mention any of this and suggests that this is simply an inter-ethnic conflict of the local Russian and Ukrainian population.

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The translation of this article was made possible by our cooperation with the Heinrich Böll Foundation.