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Socialist Worker

Fighting fascism in Hungary

by Martin Smith

Veroce is a typical Hungarian village – streets of wooden and stone houses built around a few shops and a huge church.

Last week gangs of young skinheads attending the Nazi Magyar Sziget music festival rampaged through the village chanting 'kill the gypsies'.

By the end of the evening they had severely beaten up a young Roma boy and assaulted a pregnant woman in the village.

Over 10,000 fascists from across Europe attended the Nazi Magyar Sziget festival.

Only a few days earlier a gang of Nazi thugs murdered a Roma woman and severely injured her teenage daughter in their home in northeast Hungary.

When the press asked the police what had happened in Veroce, 'they claimed they had not heard of any reports of violence in the village.'

Visting Veroce a week after the attack, I asked local villagers what had happened, most were too scared to answer.

But several people were prepared to speak out and talked of the violence the nazi festival brings with it.

One baker, Pekseg told me that 'he didn't care much for the 'gypsies' but then went on to say, 'of course the young men set about gypsies, they hate them. The police just turned a blind eye, some of them even joined in!'

At the villages main church, a pastor explained that for the Roma in the village it was 'a night of terror' and on Sunday morning fascist in full regalia paraded outside his church.

Hungary's Nazi Jobbik party were behind the attacks.

Friends of the BNP, Hungary's Jobbik party -jobb means 'right' – gained 14.8% of the vote in the recent European elections.

The party's chairperson, Gabnor Vona is also the leader of the Magyar Garda – Hungarian Guard – a uniformed militia that protects Jobbik rallies and marches through Hungarian villages 'protecting ethnic Hungarians' against the Roma

The Roma make up about 10 percent of the population. Since July last year, six Roma people have been murdered and 49 others injured in racist attacks.

The biggest festival in Hungary, Sizget, takes place in Budapest and up to 350,000 people will attend.

This year it has joined up with Love Music Hate Racism for their opening day. Day Zero of Sziget Festival.

It will feature musicians representing LMHR who will help launch a new Hungarian campaign anti Nazi based campaign based on LMHR called 'Zene a Rasszizmus Ellen' ZARE (Music Against Racism).

Attila a member of the brass section in the LMHR band told me, 'I understand your Nazi Party is planning to hold its own festival.

'Let Magyar Sziget be a warning to you all. You must stop these people before they get too big – here in Hungary we let the Nazis festival grow and grow – now have a real problem.'


Article information

News
Tue 11 Aug 2009, 18:46 BST
Issue No. 2164
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