Romania: row over Hungarian military cemetery
A row has broken out in Valea Uzului, Transylvania, over a military cemetery that commemorates Hungarian soldiers who fell in the First World War. In April a neighbouring Romanian-speaking community set up a memorial site with 50 cement crosses commemorating Romanian soldiers there. Unknown persons emptied bags of refuse onto the site and last week fighting broke out between Hungarians and Romanians outside the cemetery.
Better to look after the living!
Journalist Lucian Mîndruță has no patience with the flaring emotions, noting on the blog Digi24.ro:
“Both sides need to understand a simple fact: cemeteries belong to the dead. In any event the deceased are as good as kin: under the earth, their bones lying atop one another. They died because they fought each other, but they lie side by side. Do we really want to die too? Do we want to wrap up all the loose ends? Do we want a civil war that would tear Romania apart? No, we don't? Then we should leave the dead in peace. And we should start to love the living more, regardless of whether they're called Ion or Istvan.”
Trampling on graves and norms
Pro-government Hungarian daily Magyar Hírlap is appalled by Bucharest's reaction:
“The mob may have no morals but one would at least expect a little shame and a false promise to defuse the situation from the representatives of the state. But in our case the government, which has been left to get along on its own without its gangster leader, couldn't even manage that. The foreign minister advised the Hungarian diplomats not to interfere, while the Romanian ambassador, in a step without precedent, ignored Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szíjjártó's summons. So they not only trampled on our forefathers' graves, but on the norms of international diplomacy.”