Post Tagged with: "Refugee Crisis"

András Heisler, President of the Hungarian Federation of Jewish Communities (MAZSIHISZ) greets János Lázár, Minister of the Prime Minister's Office. Photo: Péter Gyula Horváth.

Hungary’s government warns Jewish community about Muslim refugees

Officials from Hungary’s Orbán government, including Minister of Human Resources Zoltán Balog, met with Jewish community leaders this week to discuss new efforts to improve Holocaust education in Hungarian schools and to alert Hungarian Jews to the fact that they too may be “impacted” by the continued wave of refugees, arriving primarily from war-torn Syria and Afghanistan. Based on the […]

by · August 13, 2015 · Politics
The two Vic(k)tors: Victor Ponta of Romania (left) and Viktor Orbán of Hungary (right).

Growing diplomatic row between Hungary and Romania

In the doldrums of summer, there is a growing and increasingly public conflict between Hungary’s Orbán government and the Ponta administration in Romania. In just the past two days, the diplomatic representatives of the  two countries, serving in Budapest and Bucharest, have been summoned by the respective foreign ministries of the two EU member states and both are claiming that […]

by · August 11, 2015 · Politics
Marian Kotleba supports Prime Minister Orbán.

Slovak neo-Nazi Marian Kotleba supports Orbán’s “brave steps” on immigration

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has a new admirer just north of the border in Slovakia. The regional governor of Banska Bystrica (Besztercebánya in Hungarian) Marian Kotleba, sent an open letter to Mr. Orbán on July 28th expressing his support for Orbán’s “brave and effective steps aimed at saving European countries from an inundation of immigrants.” “I express full support […]

by · August 10, 2015 · East
Dr.Yama Nayab, sits with his daughter in Szabadka (Hungarian-dominated northern Serbia), waiting to cross into Hungary. Dr. Nayab was a surgeon in Afghanistan. Photo: Sima Diab/The Guardian.

It’s in Hungary’s interest to accept more refugees and immigrants

I increasingly believe that it is in Hungary’s enlightened self-interest to begin accepting many more of the Syrian and Afghan refugees, rather than stoking fear within Hungarian society and creating a siege mentality, which seems to be the tactic du jour. There is the humanitarian argument, where one might reasonably expect a greater degree of compassion and understanding from Hungarian […]

by · July 29, 2015 · Focus
Muslim prayer in Budapest. Photo: Ahmed Miklós Kovács.

The Hungarian far-right and Islam

Traditionally, Hungary’s extreme right was not openly Islamophobic. In fact, the Hungarian right-wing in general tended to differ markedly from conservative politicians in North America and much of western Europe in its support for Palestinian nationhood and its criticism of Israel. At the time of the war with Hezbollah back in 2006, I wrote a response to a piece published […]

by · July 27, 2015 · Politics
A Syrian refugee learns to ride a scooter...thanks to an random act of kindness from a Hungarian homeless man in Budapest. Photo: Szilárd Kalmár.)

Hungarians oppose new iron curtain on Serbian border

A poll produced for the political news weekly, Vasárnapi Hírek, on the Orbán government’s plans to erect a 175 km long fence along the border between Hungary and Serbia–in order to stop the growing wave of refugees and migrants crossing the frontier illegally–reveals some surprising results. The opinion poll was conducted by the Publicus Intézet and it shows that a […]

by · July 11, 2015 · Politics
These Afghan refugees hide in the forests of Vojvodia, Serbia, awaiting the safest moment to cross into Hungary. Photo: Sima Diab/The Guardian.

Hungarian police to patrol border between Serbia and Macedonia

Hungary is sending 20 police officers and will install thermal imaging cameras to help monitor Serbia’s southern borders, in an attempt to stop a growing number of refugees from making their way into the European Union through Macedonia and Serbia. This move follows heightened tension between Budapest and Belgrade, after the Orbán government’s unilateral decision to erect a four metre-high […]

by · June 22, 2015 · East
Asylum-seekers arriving to the borders of the European Union.

Refugee claimants in Hungary and the EU: A statistical overview

According to figures released Thursday by Eurostat, as part of its quarterly report, Germany and Hungary received the most refugees of all member states in the European Union. The number of asylum seekers increased by 86% in the EU. Kosovars formed the single largest group of refugees arriving to EU member states, followed by Syrians and Afghanis. Forty percent of […]

by · June 18, 2015 · East
This map, produced by Hungary's Office of Immigration and Citizenship, shows the flow of migrants arriving in Hungary.

Hungary to erect fence along border with Serbia

Péter Szijjártó, Hungary’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, announced Wednesday that the Orbán government has decided to erect a four metre fence along a 175 km stretch of border with Serbia, in order to stop the flow of refugees and migrants entering the country. Mr. Szijjártó pointed to the border between Bulgaria and Turkey as a precedent, and added that in […]

by · June 17, 2015 · Politics
In this racist government billboard, the regime tells immigrants that if they come to Hungary, they  have to respect Hungarian laws.

Activists arrested–Orbán’s police guard racist billboards using surveillance

Six opposition activists who defaced the Orbán government’s rabidly xenophobic billboards were arrested at dawn, two of whom were kept at the Zugló police station for several hours. The three men and three women are all in their twenties and thirties. According to the activists who have since been released, police officers are being used to keep the growing number […]

by · June 7, 2015 · Politics