Hungarian Politician Denies He is Anti-Semitic, Still Wants Registry of Jews

Sunday, 02 Dec 2012 02:41 PM

By Sandy Fitzgerald

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Hungarian right-wing politician Marton Gyongyosi, the deputy parliamentary floor leader for the country’s Jobbik party, insists he isn’t an anti-Semite, yet he still clings to the notion that Jews living in Hungary should be registered.

Gyöngyösi's spent time in the Middle East growing up, reports Der Spiegel, and is now his party’s foreign policy spokesman.

During a debate over Israel’s military offensive against Hamas, he demanded that "all Jews living in Hungary be registered" and that "Jews, particularly those in parliament and the government, be evaluated for the potential danger they pose to Hungary."

And in comments directed toward Zsolt Németh, a state secretary in the Foreign Ministry, he demanded the compilation.

Nemeth didn’t condemn the comments, but noted “the number of Jews in Hungarian government really has nothing to do with the serious conflict in the Middle East."

Gyongyosi’s comments marked the first time Jobbik identified itself with Nazi racist dogma, and triggered disgust from Jewish organizations, politicians and civil rights activists, with several gathering last week to protest “creeping Fascism” in Hungary’s parliament.

Jobbik politicians normally deny any neo-Nazism sympathies. But on its Internet television channel, N1, the party once praised Adolph Hitler as one of the greatest statesmen in the 20th century.

The Hungarian government didn’t immediately release a statement condemning Gyongyosi’s statements, but waited until after the protests, which caused a further outcry.

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