Orbán advisor resigns after PM's controversial comments on race

Government

Viktor Orbán at an event in Baile Tusnad last Saturday.

Photo by MTI/Prime Minister's Press Office/Vivien Cher Benko

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán's longtime advisor Zsuzsanna Hegedüs has resigned over the PM's controversial comments on race he made at an event in Baile Tusnad in Romania last week.

According to news site Hvg.hu, she described Orbán's comments as "pure Nazi text worthy of Joseph Goebbels" in her letter of resignation, which she handed in yesterday.

"I really hope that, for whatever reason, this speech in Baile Tusnad, which could please even the most bloodthirsty racists, was just a slip, and that in the future, albeit without me, you will be able to return to a position that has long been too autocratic and too radically anti-EU and anti-migrant for me, and thus at least wash away the accusation of being a prime minister, who is nowadays unacceptable even to the far right of Western Europe and openly promotes racist policies," she told Orbán in her letter.

Responding to her resignation, Orbán himself also wrote a letter to Hegedüs, who served as the PM's envoy for social inclusion prior to her resignation, where he denied accusations of racism.

"You can't seriously think of accusing me of racism after 20 years of working together. You know better than anyone that in Hungary my government has a zero-tolerance policy on anti-Semitism and racism," he wrote, according to Mandiner.hu.

In his speech in Romania last Saturday, Orbán criticized Western European nations for "mixing their population" and claimed that cities in Western Europe were "lost to the non-European population".

"We are not a mixed race, and we do not want to become a mixed race either," he also said.

The speech drew heavy criticism from several politicians and organizations. The International Auschwitz Committee of Holocaust survivors called the PM's comments "stupid and dangerous".  His remarks were condemned not only by opposition politicians, but also by András Heisler, President of the Federation of Hungarian Jewish Communities (MAZSIHISZ), and Róbert Frölich, Chief Rabbi of Hungary.

 

 

 

 

 

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