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The suspected perpetrators of two attacks on a Hungarian cultural center in Ukraine are behind bars, but the reasons behind the incidents remain very murky.
Ukrainian National Police chief Serhiy Knyazev wrote on Facebook Sunday that three suspects in the 27 February arson that destroyed much of the first floor of the Hungarian Cultural Society of Transcarpathia in Uzhhorod were under detention. A foreigner suspected of planning the arson remains at large.
Two men suspected of a failed arson attack on the building on 4 February had been arrested in Poland, Knyazev said, RFE/RL reports.
Some say a Russian connection could explain why Poles and other foreigners may have wanted to burn down a Hungarian institution in Ukraine.
Interfax-Ukraine quotes Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin’s Twitter post: “A Russian trace is seen everywhere. My 'regards' to all those who have speculated on mystical anti-Hungarian sentiments. I do not rule out that attempts to destabilize the situation may continue.”
The two Polish suspects are members of a far-right group with ties to Russia and pro-Russian Ukrainian separatists, according to the Daily Beast.
Their organization, Falanga, and its website Xportal.pl may also have links to Mateusz Piskorski, the leader of a minor pro-Russian party in Poland and suspected Russian spy, Polish journalist Oskar Gorzynski writes in the Beast.
Ukrainian police said earlier that some Falangists had fought alongside Ukrainian separatists, RFE says.
Hungary denounced the attacks on the cultural center and demanded explanations from Kyiv. More than 100,000 ethnic Hungarians live in the far-western Transcarpathia region.
Hungary and other neighboring countries issued strong protests last year against new Ukrainian legislation restricting the use of minority languages in schools. Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto called the bill “shameful and insulting” and said the legislation threatened the survival of Hungarian culture in Transcarpathia.
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The Moldovan Diaries is a multimedia, interactive examination of the country's ethnic, religious, social and political identities by Paolo Paterlini and Cesare De Giglio.
This innovative approach to story telling gives voice to ordinary people and takes the reader on the virtual trip across Moldovan rural and urban landscapes.
It is a unique and intimate map of the nation.