Milanović Reacts to Orban’s Map of Greater Hungary

By 7 May 2020

ZAGREB, May 7, 2020 - President Zoran Milanović has told Croatian fourth-grade secondary school students ahead of school leaving exams to learn from history but to look to the future, thus responding to the publication of a historical map of the so-called Great Hungary on the Facebook page of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban.

Writing in a Facebook post on Thursday, Milanović said that most European countries had in their closets historical maps showing them bigger than they are today, but they are unachievable and they always irritate the neighbours.

Orban has been extending best wishes to Hungarian students ahead of school leaving exams for several days now, and on Wednesday, before a history exam, he published a historical map of Hungary that includes portions of Croatian territory.

"Following the publication of the map/globe showing a hypertrophied Hungary, otherwise our neighbour and, in recent history, a friend which is currently in the firm grip of chronic 'map addicts', here is my message of encouragement to Croatian students ahead of their school leaving exams: Croatia is a modern European state and nation. In our closets and archives there are many historical maps that show our country much bigger than it is today," the president said.

"Closets in most European countries keep similar contents hidden," he added, calling on young people not to share them on their social media accounts. "They are not topical or achievable and, more importantly, they profoundly irritate our neighbours in pretty much the same way as we are irritated and surprised every time by maps that occasionally and predictably emerge like a dark fetish from the pages of some 'leaders' in our neighbourhood."

Milanović called such moves "provocations by those who know well that such maps will continue to remain in the closets."

"Learn from history, but look to the future," he told Croatian students.

More news about relations between Croatia and Hungary can be found in the Politics section.