Hundreds of skinheads disrupt Jewish festival

Ananova, Dec. 5, 2002

Hundreds of skinheads have disrupted an open-air Jewish celebration in Budapest, chanting “Hungary is ours.”

The demonstration was staged by members of nationalist skinhead organisation, the Hungarian Revisionist Movement.

Members of the city’s Jewish community were lighting candles there on the sixth day of the eight-day Jewish Festival of Lights.

“There were several hundred skinheads in front of the stage,” according to the director of the Federation of Hungarian Jewish Communities, said.

Gusztav Zoltai said police did not intervene, saying both organizations had received permission from police to hold meetings on the square.

He added that national police chief Laszlo Salgo had ordered an investigation into why the two organizations had been given permission to meet at the same time in the same place.

Police declined to comment, citing the ongoing investigation.

Representatives of foreign Jewish organizations were also present at the celebration ahead of a weekend meeting of the European Jewish Congress in the city.

Around 100,000 Jews live in Hungary, a country of 10 million. Open displays of anti-Semitism are fairly uncommon.

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