Jews vic­tims of prej­u­dice in Hun­gary

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - WORLD -

BU­DAPEST: Hun­gary’s Jewish com­mu­nity, one of the big­gest in Europe, is strug­gling with a rise in anti-semitism, ac­cord­ing to re­cent sur­veys, even as Europe marks the 75th an­niver­sary of Kristall­nacht.

A re­port by the EU Fun­da­men­tal Rights Agency (FRA) showed anti- Semitism has wors­ened across Europe over the past five years, fa­cil­i­tated by so­cial me­dia and file-shar­ing web­sites.

But it was Hun­gary, France and Bel­gium that re­ported the high­est rates of anti-Semitism, as well as van­dal­ism and open hos­til­ity in the street, the study showed.

The re­port was re­leased ahead of the an­niver­sary this week­end of the Night of Bro­ken Glass pogrom, which saw Nazi thugs smash up Jewish busi­nesses and syn­a­gogues through­out Ger­many in 1938.

“Older Jews, Holo­caust sur­vivors and their chil­dren are afraid…,” said Janos Gado, an ed­i­tor with Hun­gar­ian Jewish news­pa­per Szom­bat.

A study by An­dras Ko­vacs from Bu­dapest’s Cen­tral Euro­pean Univer­sity pinned much of the blame on the openly anti- Semitic Job­bik party, which won 17 per­cent of the vote in 2010 elec­tions.

In the past two years, Hun­gary’s chief rabbi was sworn at on a Bu­dapest street, an­tiSemitic chants were heard at a foot­ball match against Is­rael and pig’s trot­ters were placed on a statue of Raoul Wal­len­berg, the Swedish diplo­mat who saved thou­sands of Bu­dapest Jews in World War II.

The na­tion­al­ist rhetoric adopted by prime min­is­ter Vik­tor Or­ban has also been blamed for anti-semitism. – Sapa-AFP

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