Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre urges Canadian government to remove Hungary from list of “safe” countries

2012 december 17 10:45 de.1 comment
Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre urges Canadian government to remove Hungary from list of “safe” countries

In a statement issued this past weeked, the Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre (MHMC) noted that it finds it regrettable that the Canadian government has included East European countries, Hungary among them, in the list of designated countries of origin (DCO) created by the so-called Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act, formerly known as Bill C-31. When Bill C-31, which modifies the refugee protection system, received royal assent, the MHMC publicly appealed to the government to apply these measures with extreme caution. “The fact that a government is elected democratically does not necessarily mean that it will assure the safety and equal treatment of […]

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Hungary prepares for fraudulent elections – An appeal by members of the pre-1989 democracy movement to European Institutions

2012 december 7 12:37 du.16 comments
Hungary prepares for fraudulent elections – An appeal by members of the pre-1989 democracy movement to European Institutions

If the next Hungarian elections in 2014 were to be held under the recently rammed-through rules, they would be illegitimate and fraudulent, for the first time in a European Union member state. The undersigned are participants of the human rights and democracy movement that opposed the one-party communist regime in the 1970s and 1980s. We struggled for multi-party, free and fair elections; and we achieved that goal in 1990. Every four years since then, Hungary has elected a Parliament and a government on the basis of laws designed and endorsed by all the political parties. However, in a manner unthinkable […]

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Statement of the Canadian – Hungarian Democratic Charter Concerning the Racist Comments of Mr. Márton Gyöngyösi, Deputy Chairman of the Hungarian Parliament’s Foreign Relations Committee

2012 november 29 12:21 du.6 comments
Statement of the Canadian – Hungarian Democratic Charter Concerning the Racist Comments of Mr. Márton Gyöngyösi, Deputy Chairman of the Hungarian Parliament’s Foreign Relations Committee

Montreal, November 29, 2012 On Monday, November 26, 2012, the co-chairman of the Hungarian Parliament’s Foreign Relations Committee, Márton Gyöngyösi, stood up in Parliament and asked the right-wing government of Viktor Orbán to compile a list of those members of the government and of Parliament who are of Jewish ancestry. In the view of this prominent Hungarian parliamentarian, the presence of Jews in Parliament and the government pose a threat to Hungary’s national security. The last time such blatantly racist statements were heard in Hungary’s Parliament was during the darkest days of the Holocaust, during the Regency of Admiral Nicholas […]

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Hungarian MP suggests creating list of “dangerous” Jews – Democrats set to organize flash mob

2012 november 27 1:10 de.12 comments
Hungarian MP suggests creating list of “dangerous” Jews – Democrats set to organize flash mob

On November 26th, 2012 a Hungarian MP, Márton Gyöngyösi called for the government to count the Jews and to make a list of those sitting in Parliament and in government. He also stated that Jews pose a national security risk. After his remarks, none of the Hungarian MPs were at all shocked or upset, including those who purport to be democrats and are critical of the current Orbán regime. The Speaker of the House did not mute Gyöngyösi’s microphone and did not discipline him either; yet, his remarks received a gentle applause and tacit support among some on the right. “Marton Gyongyosi, MP had the following to […]

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Gordon Bajnai: This government has systematically broken the spine of Hungarian democracy, vertebrae by vertebrae

2012 október 26 9:48 de.6 comments
Gordon Bajnai: This government has systematically broken the spine of Hungarian democracy, vertebrae by vertebrae

Gordon Bajnai, Hungary’s former left-centre prime minister (2009-10), staged a comeback on October 23rd, 2012, when he gave a keynote speech at a pro-democracy rally in downtown Budapest and announced the formation of a political alliance entitled Together 2014 (Együtt 2014). The Alliance, which includes an opposition Facebook group called Milla, the Hungarian Solidarity Movement and Bajnai’s Patriotism and Progress Public Policy Foundation, aims to foster cooperation among all those political parties and civic groups that oppose Prime Minister Viktor Orbán authoritarian regime. Bajnai, someone often perceived more as a sober, competent–though slightly technocratic–caretaker prime minister and a policy wonk, […]

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The Ramil Safarov affair has destroyed Hungary’s international reputation

2012 szeptember 3 4:33 du.6 comments
The Ramil Safarov affair has destroyed Hungary’s international reputation

The government of Azerbaijan has spent the last eight years trying to convince Budapest to release from its custody Ramil Safarov, an Azeri soldier who in 2004 murdered his Armenian roommate in Budapest, purely out of hate for Armenia. Ferenc Gyurcsány, Hungary’s former socialist prime minister, denied repeated requests from Baku, as he was not convinced that the Azeri counterparts would honour their end of the deal, by ensuring that Safarov remains in custody to serve his life sentence. Current Prime Minister Viktor Orbán was much less circumspect than his predecessor, and seemingly had no qualms releasing the axe murderer to Azerbaijan on August 31st, 2012, where […]

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An open letter to Senator Ben Cardin on Hungary’s descent into autocracy

2012 július 14 10:40 de.23 comments
An open letter to Senator Ben Cardin on Hungary’s descent into autocracy

On behalf of the Canadian Hungarian Democratic Charter, a non-partisan civil rights organization committed to the defense of democratic governance in Hungary, I wanted to publicly congratulate you on your courageous Senate statement on Hungary. Your factually flawless, and eminently reasonable position gladdens the hearts and spirits of those who are working, at considerable risk to themselves and to their families, to defend democracy in Hungary, and to uphold principles that lie at the base of the North Atlantic Alliance.

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It’s time to boycott the Orbán regime

2012 július 2 6:34 de.33 comments
It’s time to boycott the Orbán regime

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s government and his right-wing Fidesz supermajority has been consistently in the limelight during its more than two years in power, throughout Europe and even in North America, usually due to its belligerence, authoritarianism and—most recently—it’s attempt to sanitize a dark episode in Hungarian history, namely Regent Miklós Horthy’s fascistic interwar regime. The Canadian Hungarian Journal sat down in Budapest with two leading Hungarian intellecuals and civil rights activists, both of whom are outspoken participants in the country’s fledgling democratic resistance. Dénes Lajos Nagy is a physicist and a university professor, as well as the former chair […]

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Károly Patrovits and his heroic deeds during the Second World War – an appeal from Hungary

2012 április 18 10:20 de.5 comments
Károly Patrovits and his heroic deeds during the Second World War  – an appeal from Hungary

Two of our readers, Fruzsina Magyar and Tamás Patrovits, sent the Canadian Hungarian Journal the letter published below, in which they seek our help in unearthing more information on the life of Károly Patrovits, a Hungarian journalist credited with saving the lives of hundreds of Hungarian Jews during the Second World War. If you know anything about Károly Patrovits, who saved the lives of many Jewish forced laborers, an act for which he paid with his own life, please let us know. We read an article by László Feleki in the May 25, 1975 issue of the newspaper Népsport. It […]

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Opening remarks at the reconsecration of the Kapuskasing internee cemetery

2011 október 15 10:36 de.4 comments
Opening remarks at the reconsecration of the Kapuskasing internee cemetery

Canada’s first national internment operations represented a historic injustice. Although internment impacted a range of communities from the lands of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Ottoman Empire and other parts of Europe, Ukrainian Canadian scholars and community activists launched the redress campaign and remained determined in their call for remembrance, commemoration and restitution, even when federal government officials denied that an injustice had occured or dispassionately and indifferently told them to forgive, forget and move on. One of the gravest forms of injustice is when the victims cannot tell their story, when they are silenced by denial or indifference, when they […]

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European solidarity: an interview with Polish ambassador Zenon Kosiniak-Kamysz

2011 július 15 12:04 de.0 comments
Zenon Kosiniak-Kamysz

Zenon Kosiniak-Kamysz Poland assumed the European Union’s rotating presidency after Hungary’s turn at the wheel ended on July 1st, 2011, and at a time when the EU continues to face major economic challenges at home and a range of new opportunities abroad, particularly in its relationship with rapidly changing countries in the Middle East. Polish ambassador Zenon Kosiniak-Kamysz spoke with the Canadian Hungarian Journal about his hopes for a Europe driven by a sense of solidarity, and one which continues on the paths of integration and expansion. Mr. Kosiniak-Kamysz served as a diplomat in Budapest immediately after the transition to democracy in 1989/90–a time which he […]

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