150 Years of Croatian-Hungarian Settlement Marked in Budapest

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ZAGREB, December 6, 2018 – The Croatian-Hungarian Settlement was the beginning of the long creation of modern Croatian civil society, Croatian Institute of History head Jasna Turkalj said in Budapest on Wednesday at a conference on the 150th anniversary of the document. The document regulated the status of Croats in the last 50 years of Austria-Hungary, the beginning of the development of modern, though not independent Croatia.

Turkalj and seven Croatian and Hungarian historians spoke at the conference in the Hungarian parliament, held under the auspices of its Speaker Laszlo Kover and his Croatian counterpart Gordan Jandroković.

Jandroković said the Croatian-Hungarian state union had been one of the longest state unions in history. “We were together since 1102 as active political stakeholders in Europe, notably central Europe.”

“It’s also important to underline that we belong to the same European cultural and civilisation circle and we were, and still are, naturally inclined to cooperate closely,” he said.

The Croatian-Hungarian Settlement was the foundation on which Ban Ivan Mažuranić implemented numerous reforms and although it did not give Croatia the fundamental features of a state, it ensured the features of special statehood such as territory, borders, legislation, management, tuition, worship, judiciary and internal affairs. “With that, Croatia acquired a status that no other Slavic nation had.”

Both Jandroković and Kover underlined the importance of intensifying Croatian-Hungarian cooperation in the context of, said Jandroković, “an increasingly complex world full of challenges and a never more fragile European Union.”

Opening the conference, Kover said that “we in central Europe want to defend ourselves from big powers passing through this region, which is why we should take care of ourselves together.” “We should move away from the past and not look for protectors in big powers. There’s no third way.”

“Big tests are coming, dark clouds have gathered over Europe and migration is just one of the attacks on European culture and customs,” Kover said, adding that central Europe could become Europe’s centre, rather than be its periphery. “In these bad times you can’t have a bad relationship with the neighbours. We must look for an answer to our disagreements and the legacy of the Croatian-Hungarian Settlement can help in that,” he said.

Jandroković said this was his third meeting with Kover as parliament speaker and that he chose Hungary for his first official trip abroad to say that Croatia was interested in stronger relations.

“Today we see that Croatia and Hungary have good and friendly relations. There’s this outstanding issue that we will resolve in the future, but it mustn’t cast a shadow on the overall relations, which are important politically, economically and geostrategically,” Jandroković said, referring to the issue of Croatia’s INA oil company.

For more on the Croatian-Hungarian relations, click here.


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