Timing of coordinated plaza bomb threats 'no coincidence', MBSZ says

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The timing of coordinated bomb threats that forced the evacuation of seven shopping malls in the capital and seven in other big cities around the country on Tuesday was "no coincidence", the Hungarian Shopping Center Association (MBSZ) said in Thursday's issue of business daily Világgazdaság, according to a report by state news wire MTI.

MBSZ chief secretary Judit Balatoni said the bomb threats were made on the first day after the long Easter holiday weekend, while schools were still on spring break. Visitor numbers at shopping malls are "especially high" at this time, so the evacuations affected "tens of thousands" of shoppers and "several thousand" retailers, she added.

Balatoni said the scale of the impact of the bomb threat, in terms of the number of shopping malls, was unprecedented in Hungary.

Shopping centers follow a strict protocol, in compliance with the law, in cases involving bomb threats, shutting down business for 3-4 hours, on average, she added.

An investigation of the bomb threats has been launched.

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