Hungarian prime minister ‘indignant’ over Jewish cemetery attack

AMSTERDAM (JTA) — Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán expressed his “indignation” at an attack on a Jewish cemetery near Budapest.

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In a letter to the country’s Jewish leaders, Orbán said he had ordered the interior ministry to track down the perpetrators of the attack a week ago on the Székesfehérvár cemetery as soon as possible.

The assailants used spray paint to draw Stars of David on walls and tombstones of the cemetery, located southwest of the capital, on June 3. Then they crossed out the symbols. They also spray painted some profanities and anti-Jewish slogans.

“I have learned with distress and indignation about the news that in Hungary, in the city of my beloved alma mater, the cemetery of your community was desecrated,” the prime minister wrote, according to the Hungarian foreign ministry.

“Beyond expressing my condolences and solidarity, I would like to inform you that I have instructed the Minister of Interior to proceed with the investigation as quickly and as directly as possible. At the same time, I would like to assure you that the Government of Hungary guarantees your safety, and life without fear.”

On June 7, some 120 Hungarians donned paper yellow stars with the word “Jude,” German for “Jew,” written on them and lined up on the bank of the Danube in downtown Budapest to protest recent anti-Semitic and racist incidents in Hungary.

The demonstration was a reaction to recent anti-Semitic incidents. Last week a young man accosted Jozsef Schweitzer, a former chief rabbi in Hungary.

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