After failing to provoke the commemorators on the National Holiday of Hungarians, Mihai Tîrnoveanu, the leader of the extremist organization „Calea Neamului” (translated as the „Path of the Nation”, referring to the Romanian nation), together with some of his followers, returned to Sfântu Gheorghe. This time he intended to harass the citizens of Sfântu Gheorghe, who were doing their jobs, with huge loudspeakers and by spreading their extremist views.

Early in the afternoon on last Thursday, a pre-announced, yet for the locals an outrageous and provocative action took place in the centre of Sfântu Gheorghe, disturbing people by playing patriotic Romanian songs from loudspeakers and waving National Flags of Romania, while reminding locals that ”they live in Romania”. The authorities repeatedly called upon them to account for the noise, but without any results.

Members of the organization took video footage of the demonstration, recording the people who stopped or passed through the area. Romanian patriotic songs, such as ”We are Romanians” and the National Anthem of Romania resounded in the main square of Sfântu Gheorghe.

The purpose of the demostration, organized by the nationalist Tîrnoveanu, was to remind the people of Sfântu Gheorghe that: ”they live in a unitary, sovereign and independent national state, called Romania”.

The extremist leader boasted that unlike the leaders of Hungary and DAHR (UDMR), they are not ”weak flowers” but ”thousand-year-old oaks”, who are not afraid of their roots, they are confident and they accept everyone under their ”branches”. They called on the Hungarian leaders to „recognise the Treaty of Trianon and the provisions of the Constitution of Romania, to let go of the nostalgia and the longing for the former empires”.

It was impossible to work in the nearby institutions and it was also impossible to teach in the schools in the area because of the huge voice. The demonstration, which began after 1 pm, ended at around 3:30 pm after the mayor, Árpád Antal, deemed that it had exceeded the legal limits, disturbed public peace and disrupted the operation of public, cultural and economic insititutions. As a result, he convened the committee for authorising public demonstrations and asked for the activity to be stopped.

Éva Sztakics, director of the nearby Székely Mikó High School, also said that they had filed a complaint because the noise was too loud to hold classes properly.

After the anti-Hungarian demonstration, the mayor filed a complaint against the perpetrators for disturbing the peace and stressed that ”after their failed provocation on the 15th of March, the extremist organisation Calea Neamului, led by Tîrnoveanu, returned with a vengeance and frustration. According to the law, they have to report in advance such events, which they had done. Although I have strongly requested the gendarmerie to take action against them, they have not yet done so, as the volume of the event must be proportional to the number of participants, and at this event there are more speakers than participants.”

Erika Benkő, director of the Mikó Imre Minority Rights Legal Services Assistance, commented on the incident by pointing out that: ”Apart from shocking people, it was a very tasteless action. We do not really understand what Tîrnoveanu was trying to achieve. Should the Romanian state be more agreeable for the locals by making people listen to the extreme nationalist chants of some extremist hooligans during working hours? I think that this group, in addition to its obviously anti-Hungarian behaviour, suffers from some kind of inferiority complex if they feel that they have to come here and disturb people in the main square of our city with their chauvinistic manifestation.”

(Photo: Tuchiluș Alex)

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