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Deputy PM: 700,000 Beyond-Border Hungarians Granted Citizenship So Far

By Tamás Székely // 2015.07.16.

So far 750,000 ethnic Hungarians have applied for Hungarian citizenship and 700,000 people have been granted the status, Deputy PM Zsolt Semjén said, adding that the fast-tracked process meant that one million new Hungarian citizens by the end of the current government term was a realistic goal. The Christian Democrat (KDNP) leader said almost 100,000 people would be simply declared Hungarian citizens by the end of the term rather than going through the naturalisation process. This will apply to people whose parents or grandparents emigrated from Hungary and are Hungarians by birth but have never been declared Hungarian citizens.

Zsolt Semjén pointed out that the citizenship procedure is the strictest administrative procedure, as all applicants undergo a three-fold check, with an administrative, a public security and a national security review are being carried out in every case. According to the Deputy Prime Minister, the naturalisation procedure is an unprecedented effort in the history of the Hungarian State, which “Hungary will continue to conduct with the same commitment and effort in future”.

It is important to realise that Hungarian naturalisation is against the interests of successor states, who accordingly often try to hinder the process though disinformation, but without much success. In fact, by now, they have more or less accepted the fact that the naturalisation procedure is an unparalleled success, a process that cannot be impeded”, Semjén explained. He urged people living in countries that do not accept dual citizenship – such as Slovakia for example – to come to Hungary, where the administrative procedure of naturalisation will be conducted and they will be issued their Hungarian passports.

Zsolt Semjén also noted that the scope of nation policy efforts is expanding. As examples, he mentioned the Kőrösi Csoma Sándor Programme, within which young Hungarians are sent to diaspora organisations abroad to facilitate their community-building work, and the various thematic years that focus on Hungarian kindergartens or schools abroad. He also pointed out that the Hungarian government attaches great importance to supporting the vocational training of young Hungarians abroad, and to the economy, which is vital to assuring their continued livelihoods, he said.

via and photo: Balázs Mohai – MTI