Anti-Semitic Scenes Rampant in West Are Unthinkable in Hungary, Says Foreign Minister + Video

Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister Peter Szijjarto holds talks with his Israeli counterpart Israel Katz in Budapest.

Forrás: MTI2024. 06. 18. 16:42
Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto (right) in talks with Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz (left) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Budapest on June 17, 2024 (Photo: MTI/Robert Hegedus)
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"The anti-Israel and anti-Semitic scenes playing out in Western Europe and the United States are utterly unthinkable in Hungary, and the Jewish community in our country is absolutely guaranteed the opportunity of peaceful coexistence, Hungary's Foreign Affairs and Trade Minister Peter Szijjarto said in Budapest on Monday. In the ministry's statement at a joint press conference with his Israeli counterpart, Israel Katz, the minister expressed serious concern about the growing anti-Israel sentiment in international organizations.

Hungary has always stood up for the fair and equal treatment of Israel in international organizations and have always blocked unilateral, biased anti-Israel rants and statements, and we will of course continue to do so in the future,

he stressed.


He called the rising flames of modern-day anti-Semitism raging in the Western world an alarming development, which he said is the result of the completely irresponsible migration policy in Europe, where "the vocal minority is often able to override the will of the more quiet majority". "In Hungary," he stated, "anti-Semitic and anti-Israel scenes, demonstrations and university riots such as those that can be seen in Western European countries or even in the United States are unthinkable. Hungary, absolutely guarantees the opportunity of peaceful and safe coexistence for the Jewish community and for our fellow Jews. It is extremely infuriating that we are receiving criticisms of anti-Semitism from countries and ambassadors of countries that should at the very least remain silent in this situation, and that is quite the very least I can said," he added.

The foreign minister also recalled that the Israeli national football team has chosen Hungary as its home base and has played its last official matches here.

"I would like to assure our Israeli friends that for as long as Israel deems it necessary to have its home field away from home, Hungary will be available," he said. "And when we take over the European Union presidency, we will strive to restore cooperation between the Bloc and Israel to a basis of mutual respect," he said, calling for a normalization of dialogue between the parties and for a reduction of the voices of reproach and finger-wagging. "In this spirit, we are preparing to organize a meeting of the Association Council between the European Union and Israel during our six-month presidency," he stated.

The Hungarian politician also said that humanity is currently living in an era of danger, with armed conflicts in at least thirty locations around the world, with the most serious being the war in Ukraine and the crisis in Gaza.

The former is right next door, and although the latter is geographically further away, Hungary is directly affected, as many people of Hungarian origin live in Israel, and several of them were taken hostage by Hamas terrorists last October. He warned that with the situation in the Middle East playing a fundamentally determinant role in world security, the conflict in Gaza could easily escalate into a serious global threat. "Moreover, if the crisis in Gaza and the war in Ukraine, God forbid, reach each other, I think we could face a real danger of a world conflagration, the danger of a global war," he said. The minister then summarized Hungary's position in four points. The first is that October 7 must never be repeated anywhere, and the international community must therefore achieve victory over terrorist groups. The second point is the immediate release of all hostages.

I firmly believe there is no room here for conditions, or for establishing criteria,

he emphasized.

FM Szijjarto pointed out that five Hungarian citizens were taken prisoner, three of whom have already made it home, a fourth is unfortunately no longer alive, and the fifth is likely still alive and will hopefully be released as soon as possible. "The third point of our position is that civilian lives must be spared. We find it quite simply unacceptable, and we also find it cowardly and despicable, that terrorist organizations use civilians as shields and for protection. This is unacceptable and we sincerely hope that the lives of civilians will be safeguarded as much as possible," he said. The fourth point, he noted, is that everything possible must be done to prevent escalation and the spreading of the conflict, which could set the whole region aflame.

In the press release, Israel Katz thanked the Hungarian government for its support, adding that Hungary is a true friend of Israel and that the relationship between the two countries is based on respect. He called the country's stand against anti-Semitism exemplary. "I wish that the fight against anti-Semitism that this country is waging could also be seen in Western Europe and the rest of the world," the foreign minister of Israel said.

Cover photo: Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto (right) in talks with Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz (left) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Budapest on June 17, 2024 (Photo: MTI/Robert Hegedus)


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