On October 19, just a week after this year’s Diaspora Council concluded in Budapest, the Hungarian Embassy hosted a roundtable conference with leaders of the Hungarian American community from all across the US.
Foreign Minister Martonyi, who opened the roundtable discussion, emphasized that the Hungarian government is aware of its special responsibility towards the Hungarian diaspora abroad and this new responsibility is also acknowledged in the new constitution. He thanked the Hungarian American community for the emotional and psychological support it continues to provide for Hungary at the time of profound changes in the country.
Ambassador Szapáry talked about the emotional and symbolic as well as practical significance of Hungarian citizenship. He said that the Embassy will do everything possible to provide easy access to citizenship applicants and facilitate voter registration. He asked leaders of the Hungarian American community to keep members of their local organizations informed about the recent and upcoming changes in the voter registration process. The Ambassador also called attention to various new projects and asked the community’s help: a Hungarian Chapel in the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC, the Victims of Communism Museum in Washington and the Smithsonian Folklife Festival of which Hungary will be a featured nation next year.
Ambassador Károly Dán, and László Kálmán, Consul Generals of New York and Los Angeles also addressed issues of the local diaspora including a more precise mapping of the diaspora across the United States.
Participants of the conference came from Washington state, California, Minnesota, Ohio, New York, Connecticut and the DC area and represented various Hungarian-American organizations including the American Hungarian Federation, the Hungarian American Coalition, Minnesota Hungarians, the Hungarian Human Rights Foundation, the Amerika Magyar Hírlap, the Scouting Association, the American Hungarian Museum in Cleveland, the Hungarian Cultural Society of Connecticut, the House of Hungary in San Diego, the American Hungarian Educator’s Association, the Hungarian Association of Cleveland, the Magyar Baráti Közösség, the Hungarian American Association of Washington and the newly incorporated Kossuth Foundation.
Embassy of Hungary Washington, D.C.