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Outgoing Jewish leader accuses the government of abandoning ’zero tolerance’

May 11th, 2023

The pro-government nationwide daily rejects the accusation levelled by András Heisler, the outgoing President of the neolog Jewish organisation (MAZSIHISZ) against the government and assures Jewish Hungarians that ’zero tolerance’ against anti-Semitism is still in force in Hungary.

In a Facebook post on Sunday, András Heisler, President of the Alliance of Jewish Faith Communities (MAZSIHISZ) lambasted the authorities for recognising the result of an election within the small Orthodox Jewish community (MAOIH) which he describes as a hostile takeover by EMIH (United Hungarian Faith Community), a subsidiary of the US-based Lubavitch movement. He accused EMIH of being subservient to the government. In the same post, he also criticised the decision to pardon György Budaházy, a right-wing radical sentenced to 6 years in prison for acts of terrorism. That means an ‘end to Orbán’s zero tolerance’ /against anti-Semitism/, he wrote. (For Budaházy’s case, see BudaPost, May 4.)

On Index, EMIH leader Slomó Köves retorts that his movement is running more schools and has rebuilt more synagogues than MAZSIHISZ. He accuses Heisler and his organisation of pursuing leftist politics instead of caring for Jewish spiritual life.

In Magyar Nemzet, Ottó Gajdics asserts that the Prime Minister had no role in pardoning Budaházy as the decision was taken by President Novák. He reminds Mr Heisler that Jewish people are safe in Hungary, unlike in many west European countries. He hopes MAZSIHISZ will cease to wave the ‘anti-Semitism-card’ for the purpose of political gains and wishes them a ‘wise decision’ when electing their new leader next Sunday.

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