Hungary's Jewish Community protests PM Orbán's racist speech in which he said Hungarians don't want to become a "mixed-race" nation
The Federation of Jewish Communities in Hungary (Mazsihisz) has announced that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán sparked "serious concerns in the Jewish community" on Saturday when he declared that "Hungarians do not want to become a mixed-race nation"; Reuters reported yesterday that the chair of the federation, András Heisler, has asked for a meeting with the PM, but as of publication the Government had not commented on that. Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA) has characterized Orbán's speech as "openly racist" and reported that the Prime Minister has been criticized for it by Hungary's liberal opposition.
More than half a million Hungarian Jews were systematically murdered in the Holocaust by the Nazis during the Second World War. Currently there are between 75,000 and 100,000 Jewish people living in Hungary, the majority of them in Budapest.
"On the basis of our historical experiences and the stories of our families it is important to speak out against the misleading speeches in Hungarian public life that are prone to inducing misunderstandings," said the Mazsihisz statement. Orbán was in Romania on Saturday when he gave a speech in which he opined that the international left in Western Europe "is using a trick, an ideological ruse: the allegation - their allegation - that Europe is essentially inhabited by mixed-race nations."
Reuters quoted Orbán as follows: "There is a world in which the European nations are mixed with those who come from countries outside of Europe. That is the mixed-race world."
"However, our world exists where the people of Europe mix among themselves, move around, work and travel. So for example in the Carpathian Basin we are not mixed-race: we are just a mixture of nations living in our European homeland. We have always been fighting for that. We are willing to mix with each other, but we do not want to be mixed-race nations," the PM said.
The concept of different human races, used by the Nazis, among others, is scientifically unsustainable and is a component of racist views of the world. As the DPA explains, this ideology incorrectly ascribes characteristics to entire groups of human beings on the basis of differences that are physical such as skin color, recalling that during the Second World War, the Nazis, together with Hungarian collaborators, deported about half a million Hungarian Jews to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Concentration and Extermination Camp.
Most of those who were deported died in the gas chambers of Auschwitz. For that reason, Orbán was also criticized for yet another part of his speech in which he took aim at a European Commission proposal that each Member State reduce its gas consumption by 15 %.
"I don't see how they can enforce it, but there is German know-how for this... From a long time ago, I mean," DPA reports the PM as saying in an apparent reference to the Holocaust.
MEP Katalin Cseh of Hungary, a liberal, then translated the PM's remark into English and tweeted: "Yes, that's a joke about gas and Nazi Germany." MEP Alin Mitutsa of Romani reacted to Orbán's speech on Twitter as follows: "Speaking about race or ethnic 'purity' especially in such a mixed region such as Central & Eastern Europe is purely delusional & dangerous."
Reuters noted that the language of the speech apparently had been crafted to absorb the politics of the ultra-right, many members of which have abandoned Hungary's Jobbik opposition party after it toned down its attitudes and lost a large part of the support it has enjoyed from such voters; Orbán had already taken advantage of previous occasions to mention preserving "ethnic homogeneity", to argue fiercely against immigration, and even erected a fence made out of barbed wire on Hungary's southern border to prevent migrants from entering. He has also introduced laws against human rights defenders.
The anti-migrant policy aided Orbán's Fidesz party with winning the elections to parliament in 2018 and 2022, but is has also led to clashes with the European Commission. Orbán has always been a politician of the extreme right, especially since 2015 when Europe experienced an exceptional influx of migrants, and both his Fidesz party and he himself openly use anti-migrant rhetoric, but this is the first time he has so openly and publicly admitted his racism, according to Gazeta Wyborcza, the newspaper of the opposition in Poland.
- Czech Police tell public broadcaster that of more than 5 000 Romani refugees from Ukraine who have been vetted, just 150 have Hungarian passports
- Tent city in Czech capital has not solved the situation of the Romani refugees from Ukraine, hundreds at main station, few with Hungarian passports
- Czech Republic to offer refugees from Ukraine who hold Hungarian passports transport by train to Hungary, but isn't saying how many people this concerns
- In Czech Republic, the Hungarian passports held by some Romani refugees from Ukraine have not proved to be an advantage
- Romani mothers and children groundlessly prevented from leaving Ukraine three times before finally crossing into Hungary
- The New York Times: Humanitarian aid workers in Budapest, Hungary are stingy and strict when the refugees are Romani
- Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia: NGO reports that LGBT+ Roma face discrimination from their own families as well as majority societies in these EU Member States
- Hungarian court rules Romani children were discriminatorily institutionalized because of their origin and social status
- Romani Rose, chair of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma, returns Hungarian honors to protest anti-LGBT law
- Hungarian Supreme Court: Romani children deserve financial compensation for school segregation
- Newsweek: Trump and other Western leaders are legitimizing Hungarian PM's anti-Roma campaign, according to human rights activists
- Hungarian PM announces "national consultation" about whether to compensate Romani families whose children were educated in segregated settings
- MEPs condemn rise of antisemitism in Europe, Czech MEP defends Hungary, blames migration
- Hungary: Dozens of Neo-Nazis jointly vandalize Budapest Jewish cultural center that houses other civil society groups
- EU anti-fraud authority Hungarian program for Roma supported by EU funds has never worked and should be investigated
- Hungary: Radicals protest "Romani crime", Romani people and their allies stand up to them
- Hungary: New Fascist party establishes paramilitary group
- Hungary: Mass demonstrations, protesters say PM endangers the rule of law
- Hungary: Roma Education Fund headquarters damaged by fire
- Analysis: Quo vadis, Jobbik? Hungary's ultra-right moves to the center
- Czech mayor expelled from STAN party for talking about shooting Romani people put together an independent list for the elections, Christian Democrats have joined it
- Romanian court hands down a scandalous decision: Roma woman who was beaten up by a minibus driver has to pay a fine
- German MEP of Romani origin Romeo Franz: The situation for Roma in Ukraine is shocking, I could not believe Roma live in such conditions in Europe
- CNN: Czech Republic has discriminated against Romani refugees from Ukraine, updated data refute the myth that they all hold dual citizenship
- Czech Police arrest purveyors of disinformation who hatefully threatened refugees from Ukraine, court remands them into custody
- Emil Voráč: I distance myself from Romani supporters of xenophobic politicians in the Czech Republic
- Czech research finds one-third of Romani refugees from Ukraine have experienced discrimination here, most children are not in education, dual citizenship has not been "abused" by them
- Spain: Vigilantes set six homes of Romani families on fire in an act of collective punishment, but some European media call the incidents "peaceful demonstrations"
- Former Czech MP loses appeal over his hateful call to "get rid of useless people", the original sentence stands
- Czech volunteers say second-largest city has broken its agreement by closing camp used by Romani refugees from Ukraine near Grand Hotel
- New handbook describes how to intervene against daily hatred and racism in the Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Portugal and the Netherlands
- Czech local candidates who quit the "Mayors and Independents" party have secured enough signatures to run as independents