Washington, DC- On September 10, five leaders of the Hungarian American Coalition met at the State Department with Ambassador-Designate George Herbert Walker, who has been appointed by President George W. Bush to serve in Hungary.
The Ambassador-Designate expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to meet with Coalition leaders, and emphasized his personal admiration for things Hungarian.
The Coalition was represented by Charles Vámossy, Chairman of the Board; Frank Koszorus, Jr. and László Hámos, Executive Committee Members; Peter Soltész, Treasurer; and Emese Latkóczy of the Hungarian Human Rights Foundation.
In their discussion with Ambassador Walker, Coalition leaders gave an overview of the Hungarian-American community and offered the Coalition’s cooperation in the Embassy’s “public diplomacy”. They mentioned the recent visit by the Hungarian parliamentary delegation to Washington, co-sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and the Coalition, as a way to promote a better understanding of the U.S. position in Hungary, enhance Hungarian-American dialogue and facilitate even-handed U.S. policies in Hungary.
Coalition leaders also stressed the plight of Hungarian minorities as one of the primary concerns of Hungarian-Americans. As a positive example, they cited the meeting organized by the U.S. Embassy in Hungary last year, which brought together the U.S. political officers from Slovakia, Romania, Ukraine and Serbia to discuss the Hungarian minority issue and expressed the hope that such a conference would again be held this fall in Budapest.
“Personally, I was very impressed by Ambassador-Designate Walker’s openness and eagerness to grapple with the complex issues he will face as America’s chief representative to Hungary,” said Mr. Vámossy. “His wide-ranging experience and close personal relationship with the President will contribute greatly to strengthening American-Hungarian relations. We assured him of the Hungarian-American Coalition’s support and offered him our help. He graciously accepted it and we look forward to a productive relationship with him.”
Ambassador Walker’s induction will take place September 30th, and he will take up his post in Hungary in early October.
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The Hungarian American Coalition is a nationwide non-profit organization that promotes public understanding and awareness of Hungarian American issues.