Hungarians have always mounted revolutions for “peace, freedom and common understanding”, Gergely Karácsony, the mayor of Budapest, said at a ceremony of the Metropolitan Council marking the anniversary of the 1848-49 revolution and war of independence.
The mayor said Hungarians were still rebelling today, referring to the last thirty years and a recent demonstration held in front of the public media headquarters for press freedom.
Karácsony insisted that Hungary was a country where the burdens on the richest are fewer than on the poorest.
He questioned whether the National Bank of Hungary was fighting inflation or “fattening family assets”.
The mayor also called for Hungary to embrace the European Union “here and now”, accusing the government of unpicking European unity “with loud words, and inciting us against it”.
Karácsony said he would never have thought a time would emerge when peace would be “the most important thing for us”. “This is what we want the most. So we are rebelling for peace; for peace in Europe, for peace in Ukraine, for our peace.”
The mayor said Hungary’s utmost priority was peace within and outside its borders. At the same time, Hungary is “responsible for the Hungarians living in Ukraine, and have a responsibility to our Western allies, and the Ukrainian people who are heading for that alliance,” he said.
“Hungary cannot become once again a vassal state,” he said.
Meanwhile, Hungary was also living in a war-like state because “the powers that be always found new scapegoats to cover up their grave crimes against public good, public interest and public funds.”
“We are already aware of this is how it starts, this is what comes before real, fatal armed conflicts,” he said.
In order to find real peace, Hungary will have to cast his lot permanently with the West, he said.
Karácsony praised the aid Hungary and Hungarians have granted to Ukrainian refugees.
The park near City Hall is hosting an exhibition of Hungarian artists on the 1848 revolution, and Ukrainian artists currently fighting on the front or sheltering in their homeland, the mayor said.
Featured photo by Balázs Mohai/MTI