Looking Back: AHF since 1906
AHF and MÁÉRT (the Szabadka Initiative) - by Bryan Dawson
AHF attended this historic meeting and signed a joint declaration by ethnic Hungarian political parties and human rights organizations from successor states in an appeal to the Hungarian Government for more coherent support, coordinated planning, and dual citizenship.
AHF was among fifteen organizations from Europe, North America, and Latin America that met January 5-6, 2005 in Szabadka (Subotica) in the Vajdaság (Vojvodina), a formerly autonomous region in Serbia-Montenegro, and joined forces to persuade the Hungarian Government to coordinate with them efforts aimed at assisting ethnic Hungarians living as national minorities in Rumania, Slovakia, Serbia- Montenegro, Ukraine, Croatia, and Slovenia. The meeting marked the first time ethnic Hungarian political organizations met independently of the Hungarian government.
Participants signed a joint declaration where they:
1. Expessed their disappointment over the failure and
low turnout of the Hungarian national referendum on
dual citizenship [AHF notes that 51% of those voting,
voted in favor of the referendum] and chastised
political forces in Hungary that led a negative
campaign and used false predictions about the
2. Declared their joint belief that the Hungarian nation remains indivisible in its language, culture, and history.
3. Declared their fundamental political goal securing conditions for minority Hungarians to remain and prosper in their ancient homelands and seeking various legal and practical autonomies (local self-government).
4. Founded a new Forum of External Hungarian
Organizations to convene whenever the interests of
minority Hungarians and the nation as a whole so
AHF continues to express concern over violence against Hungarians in Vojvodina, and support for autonomy and minority protections in both Vojvodina and Kosovo.
up for the AHF mailing list.
AHF 100 YEARS DISPLAY
Why so many Hungarians across the border?
Vojvodina was part of Hungary since 896 AD and was awarded to the newly formed Yugoslavia by the French in the "Treaty" of Trianon in 1920 when Hungary lost 2/3 of her territory and 1/3 of her Hungarian population. Large scale evictions, fear of self-reporting, and other Serb progroms, have left only about 300-350,000 ethnic Hungarians in the province. Some, however, estimate this number to be double that since many fear self-reporting as Hungarian exposes them to risk. [more about the Treaty of Trianon]
The American-Hungarian community is increasingly concerned by the recent outbreak of violence in Vojvodina.
"Ethnic Cleansing" in action
How did this region become part of Yugoslavia? Read "The Conflict in the Former Yugoslavia and Autonomous Region of Vojvodina, and the Need for a More Coherent U.S. Foreign Policy" on The Hungary Page and refer to the following demographic maps comparing Vojvodina in 1910 and 1991. Note the decline seen here in Hungarian population does NOT take into consideration the Balkan conflicts and the significant escalation of atrocities against Hungarians over the last decade:
Click images for larger version
AHF Related Links
Seles (pronounced sell-esh and spelled Szeles Monika) won the European junior championship at the age of ten. Born to a Hungarian family in the former Hungarian province of Vojvodina, she moved to the United States in 1986, and in 1989 turned professional. In 1990 she won her first French Open, and in each of the following two years she won the Australian, United States, and French opens. Seles won the Australian Open in early 1993, but later that year, while resting between sets during a tournament in Hamburg, Germany, she was stabbed by a spectator. The incident caused Seles to withdraw from competition in 1993 and 1994. Seles returned to competition in 1995 and won the initial tournament of her comeback, the Canadian Open. In 1996 she again won the Australian Open.
Monica is a fierce competitor and is still going strong into the new millennium including winning the Bronze medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics!
DISCLAIMER: The American Hungarian Federation does not necessarily
endorse the content or opinions expressed by its individual members
and/or member organizations. © American Hungarian Federation®, All Rights Reserved