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Nocvűák Katalin és Natasa Pirc Musar szlovén államfő Budapesten - 2023.04.9.

We will not send our husbands and sons to the Ukrainian front!

We cherish and continue to build the already positive relations between Slovenia and Hungary – Katalin Novák emphasized at the press conference held with President of Slovenia Nataša Pirc Musar in Budapest on Wednesday.
Katalin Novák highlighted that this is the first time in the history of both countries that they have a woman president, and she pointed out that the first official visit of President Nataša Pirc Musar of Slovenia after her election was to Hungary. Among the topics of their discussion, President Novák mentioned the war between Russia and Ukraine, the enlargement of the European Union to include the Western Balkans, the importance of the cooperation between the two countries, the issue of national minorities and demographic questions.

Hungary’s Head of State emphasized that she and the President of Slovenia see eye to eye on the Russian-Ukrainian war, as both condemn Russian aggression and believe that the road to peace must be found as soon as possible. For this, allies are needed, because the peace of the entire region and of Europe is at stake – she added. She highlighted as well that: „Ukraine must not be encouraged in a way that could raise unrealistic expectations for help. We will not send our husbands and sons to the battlefield!”

She recalled that 150 thousand Hungarians live in Transcarpathia who are fighting for the reinstatement of their rights. As she said, Ukraine must operate according to European norms if it wishes to become a member of the European Union. She also stressed that Hungary provided assistance to 1.5 million people who fled from Ukraine.
Talking about the issue of national minorities, she emphasized that the situation is exemplary both in Slovenia and Hungary. Both countries are setting an excellent example in how to appreciate and support the members of minority communities.

Regarding the enlargement of the EU to include the countries in the Western Balkans, Katalin Novák underlined that integration is in the best interest of the whole of Europe, which is why the accession of these countries must be accelerated.

On energy supplies, the President stressed that Hungary considers reducing its dependence on Russian energy a key priority, therefore Hungary expects to cooperate with Slovenia in this field as well.

Analysing demographic challenges, the President of Hungary stressed that the matter affects the whole of Europe, and invited the President of Slovenia to attend the Demographic Summit to be held in Budapest in September.

Responding to a question from a journalist, Katalin Novák said that she will welcome Pope Francis to Sándor Palace next week, and hopes to be able to pray with him for the soonest possible peace in Ukraine.

Also answering a question, the Head of State described Hungary as a family-friendly country and stressed that single-parent families must be supported as well, which is why there is a network of single-parent centres to support such families in Hungary, and that this is unique in the world. 

At the joint press conference, President of Slovenia Nataša Pirc Musar called the economic cooperation of the two countries excellent and exemplary. Hungary has recently become Slovenia’s seventh most important economic partner – she added.

She also highlighted the importance of the goal of reducing their dependence on Russian energy.
Nataša Pirc Musar also spoke about the agreement signed before the press conference on the cooperation of libraries. Both countries do a great deal to strengthen relations in the field of culture as well – she said.

Concerning the war in Ukraine, the President of Slovenia stressed: hopefully, the conflict will end soon. Being mothers, both she and the Hungarian President see war in a different light. In times of crisis, it is necessary to listen to women as well, it is important to hear the voices of female leaders, too – she stressed.

The President of Slovenia also remarked that there is no such thing as an ethnically uniform country, and it is necessary for each country to take care of the national minorities living in its territory.
Similarly to the Hungarian Head of State, she stressed that both of them are the first woman leaders of their countries, by which they are opening up new perspectives for women in terms of the goals they may wish to achieve.
Talking about the Western Balkans, she said: Slovenia is working hard to build its relations with the countries of the region, as there was a time when they all formed a single country together.

The President of Hungary welcomed Hungary’s many efforts in water diplomacy.
Responding to a question, she also confirmed the significance of supporting families.