2023. February 24.
Her Excellency Ms Claire Legras, France’s Ambassador to Hungary, delivered a French lecture on “Europe and defense one year after the invasion of Ukraine” in the context of the Russia-Ukraine war, which has been going on little over a year. The event was held on February 23, at the invitation of the University of Szeged’s Francophone University Centre, in collaboration with the International and Regional Studies Institute.
In November, Ms Claire Legras, Ambassador of France to Hungary, presented her credentials to Katalin Novák, President of Hungary. On that occasion, she stressed that she wished to use her knowledge, skills and network of contacts to the benefit of French-Hungarian cooperation. The Ambassador also underlined her desire to travel around the country. Most recently, she spent some time in Nyíregyháza, and on 23 February 2023, she visited Szeged.
Ambassador Ms Legras met with Prof. Dr. Péter Zakar, Vice-Rector for International and Public Relations of the University of Szeged, Dr. Tamás Bene, Director for International Affairs and Public Relations, and Dr. Péter Kruzslicz, Administrative Director of the Francophone University Centre of Szeged. The University’s administration described the University of Szeged, the benefits of the Erasmus program, the importance of Eugloh and Coursera, the ELI-ALPS Laser Research Institute and the HCEMM, as well as the University of Szeged’s Francophone University Centre.
Claire Legras in the Rector’s Office
The Ambassador then delivered a lecture in French on “Europe and defense one year after the invasion of Ukraine” to students, lecturers, and the general public at the Faculty of Law’s main building. She highlighted the role of the European Union Member States in this context, its impact on the economy and political views, and its ramifications for the functioning of the world. She underscored the crucial nature of how a country communicates about the Russia-Ukraine war, which allows for a change in the basic operational parameters in a country and in the EU, which operates within a serious framework.
Presentation on the Russia-Ukraine war
At the end, in addition to the questions from the students present – which mainly focused on the impact on education – the press also had the opportunity to pose their questions.
France’s Ambassador to Hungary at the University of Szeged
We learned the following from the responses: Ms Claire Legras visited Szeged for the first time for the event, and was immediately captivated by the atmosphere of the city. She was delighted by the sunshine, the many beautiful buildings, the fact that the educational institutions are sticking to tradition and are open to development and cooperation. She would like to see French becoming more popular in Szeged, too, as she knows that there are currently 25,000 people in the world who are trying to learn the language through courses. She believes that knowledge of the language is the basis for acquiring knowledge, and only then can you start to build relationships, choose a career and start collaborating.
The Ambassador professed that her objective is to develop innovative strategic relations with the University of Szeged, which has a good reputation not only in Europe but also in the world.
Written by Tamara Pósa
Photos by Anna Bobkó