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A tale of two presidents and two diasporas
By Marko Puljić | Published  09/20/2011 | Učimo od drugih - We learn from others , Svi putevi vode u Hrvatsku , Community | Unrated
A lesson worth learning
 President Ivo Josipovic meeting with members of the Croatian community in New York City

CROWN editor-at-large, Nenad Bach posed a question to Croatian president Ivo Josipovic about the possibility of creating a ministry targeted at diaspora Croatians because communications between the diaspora and the homeland are bad.

President Josipovic's reply was "I do not believe there will be a special ministry, the present government did not have one, but there is a department in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs"


Compare this reply with the recent visit by the Hungarian president Pal Schmitt to Hungarian-Americans in Cleveland:

President Schmitt says Hungary won’t forgo any Hungarian, encourages US Hungarians to assume citizenship

President Pal Schmitt affirmed Hungary’s commitment to all Hungarians, wherever they live, speaking in Cleveland on Sunday.

“We will not forgo any Hungarian. As it was declared in the National Avowal of our new Constitution: we promise to preserve the intellectual and spiritual unity of our nation torn apart in the storms of the last century,” Schmitt said at a luncheon the local Hungarian Heritage Society gave in his honour.

 Hungarian President Pal Schmitt

He noted that the first law Hungary’s new parliament passed had introduced a fast-track procedure for granting Hungarian citizenship to ethnic Hungarians living abroad. He encouraged those present to take advantage of the opportunity and expressed thanks to those who had already assumed Hungarian citizenship.

The president presented high state honours to three prominent representatives of American Hungarians in recognition of their merits in organising the community and fostering ties with Hungary.

Schmitt is the first Hungarian president to visit Cleveland, a city with 100,000 residents who declared themselves of Hungarian origin in the latest census.

The president laid a wreath on the statue of prominent 19th-century Hungarian statesman Lajos Kossuth.

Following the Cleveland visit, Schmitt will take part in conferences held under the auspices of the United Nations, and address the General Assembly session on Friday.

Foreign Minister Janos Martonyi will arrive in New York early next week.


Formatted for CROWN by
  Marko Puljić
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