c0-100AD Hungary was the Roman province of
Pannonia and Pecs was the capital.
(Hem., 6/98, p.128)
375 Nov 17, Enraged by the
insolence of barbarian envoys, Valentinian, the Emperor of the West,
died of apoplexy in Pannonia in Central Europe.
410 Flavius Aetius, the son of
a Roman general, was sent to live as a hostage of the Huns.
(ON, 4/12, p.1)
451 Jun 20, Roman and Barbarian
warriors halted Attila’s army at the Catalaunian Plains
(Catalarinische Fields) in eastern France. Attila the Hun was
defeated by a combined Roman and Visigoth army. Theodoric I, the
Visigothic king, was killed. The Huns moved south into Italy but
were defeated again. Some sources date this on Sep 20. Attila and
his brother Bleda jointly inherited the Hunnish Kingdom,
headquartered in what later became Hungary. Attila later murdered
Bleda to gain full control.
451 Sep 20, Roman General
Aetius defeated Attila the Hun at Chalons-sur-Marne (Battle of the
Catalaunian Plains). Many sources date this on Jun 20.
896 The founding date of
Hungary. Seven tribes of Magyars settled in the Carpathian Basin.
Kingdom of Hungary was formed under Arpad by seven Magyar and three
(WSJ, 12/26/96, p.4)(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T5)(TJOK, p.
907 Arpad (b.~845), head of the
confederation of the Hungarian tribes, died about this time. Many
Hungarians refer to him as the "founder of our country." His
preeminent role in the Hungarian conquest of the Carpathian Basin
has been emphasized by some later chronicles. The dynasty descending
from Arpad ruled the Kingdom of Hungary until 1301.
933 Mar 15, Henry the Fowler
routed the raiding Magyars at Merseburg, Germany.
955 Aug 10, Otto organized his
nobles and defeated the invading Magyars at the Battle of Lechfeld
1000 Jan 1, Stephen became the
first king of Hungary.
(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T5)
1031 Sep 2, In Hungary Emeric
(b.1007), the son of King Stephen, was killed by a boar while
hunting. On Nov 5, 1083, King Ladislaus I unearthed Emeric's bones
in a large ceremony. Emeric was canonized for his pious life and
purity along with his father and Bishop Gerhard by Pope Gregory VII.
1038 King Stephen died.
(SFC, 8/7/99, p.A8T5)
1046 Sep 24, In Hungary Gerard
Sagredo (b.980), an Italian bishop from Venice (also known as
Gellert or Gerhard), was placed on a 2-wheel cart, hauled to a
hilltop and rolled down the later named Gellert Hill, and still
being alive at the bottom was beaten to death. He operated in the
Kingdom of Hungary (specifically in Budapest), and educated Saint
Emeric of Hungary, the son of Saint Stephen of Hungary). Gellert
played a major role in converting Hungary to Christianity. He was
canonized in 1083 along with St. Stephen and St. Emeric and became
one of the patron saints of Hungary.
1077 Apr 24, Geza I, King of
Hungary (1074-7), died.
1096 Jun 26, Peter the Hermit’s
crusaders forced their way across Sava, Hungary.
1096 Jul 12, Crusaders under
Peter the Hermit reach Sofia in Hungary.
1102 Coats were forced to enter
into a union with Hungary and to recognize the Hungarian king as
(WSJ, 7/14/99, p.A23)
1131 Mar 1, Stephen II, King of
Hungary (1116-31), died.
1172 Mar 4, Stephan III, King
of Hungary (1162-72), died.
1200-1300 The Csango people of Romania's remote
eastern Carpathian mountains began settling around this time,
dispatched by Hungarian rulers to defend the kingdom's easternmost
1241 Apr 11, Mongol armies
defeated the Hungarian army at the Battle of Mohi. The devastating
Mongol invasion killed half of Hungary's population.
1326 Mar 5, Louis I (the
Great), King of Hungary (1342-1382) and Poland (1370-1382), was
(HN, 3/5/98)(MC, 3/5/02)
1335 Charles I of
Hungary-Croatia, Casimir III of Poland and John of Bohemia met in
Visegrad, Hungary, and agreed to create new commercial routes to
bypass the staple port Vienna and obtain easier access to other
1347-1350 The Black Death: A Genoese trading post
in the Crimea was besieged by an army of Kipchaks from Hungary and
Mongols from the East. The latter brought with them a new form of
plague, Yersinia pestis. Infected dead bodies were catapulted into
the Genoese town. One Genoese ship managed to escape and brought the
disease to Messina, Sicily. The disease quickly became an epidemic.
It moved over the next few years to northern Italy, North Africa,
France, Spain, Austria, Hungary, Switzerland, Germany, the Low
countries, England, Scandinavia and the Baltic. There were lesser
outbreaks in many cities for the next twenty years. An estimated 25
million died in Europe and economic depression followed. In 2005
John Kelly authored “The Great Mortality: An Intimate History of the
Black Death, the Most Devastating Plague of All Time."
(NG, 5/88, p.678)(WSJ, 1/11/99, p.R42)(SSFC,
3/6/05, p.B1)(SFC, 10/13/11, p.A6)
1382 Sep 10, Louis I, the
Great, King of Hungary and Poland, died. Mary (1372-1395), daughter
of Louis I, became queen of Hungary.
(PC, 1992 ed,
1386 Sigismund (1368-1437), son
of Charles IV, became King of Hungary by his marriage to Queen Mary
of Hungary (1372-1395).
1387-1456 Janos Hunyadi, soldier and national
hero. He was the father of Matthias Corvinus.
(WUD, 1994, p.693,1672)
1390 Nov 22, Hungarian nobleman
Miklos Toldi (b.~1320) died. He was remembered as a legendary strong
hero in Hungarian folklore who protects women and children. Poet
János Arany based his famous Toldi trilogy on his legend.
1396 Sep 25, The last great
Christian crusade, led jointly by John the Fearless of Nevers and
King Sigismund of Hungary, ended in disaster at the hands of Sultan
Bajazet I's Ottoman army at Nicopolis.
1397 Aug 16, Albrecht II von
Habsburg, king of Bohemia, Hungary and Germany, was born.
1420 Jul 14, Jan Zizka
(1360?-1424) led the Taborites in Battle at Vitkov Zizka's hill
(Prague). The Taborites beat forces under Sigismund, the
pro-Catholic King of Hungary and Bohemia. This was part of the
Hussite Wars (1419-1436).
1429 Jan 10, Order of Golden
Fleece was established in Austria-Hungary & Spain.
1439 Oct 27, Albrecht II von
Habsburg (42), king of Bohemia, Hungary and Germany, died.
1440 Feb 22, Ladislaus V
Posthumous, King of Hungary and Bohemia, was born.
Nov 10, During the Hungarian-Turkish War (1444-1456), Sultan Murad
II beat the Crusaders in the Battle at Varna on the Black Sea.
(DoW, 1999, p.217)
1448 Oct 19, The Ottoman Sultan
Murat II defeated Hungarian General Janos Hunyadi at Kosovo, Serbia.
1454 Aug 22, Jews were expelled
from Brunn Moravia by order of King Ladislaus Posthumus (1440-1457),
king of Hungary as Ladislaus V, king of Bohemia as Ladislaus I.
1456 Mar 1, Wladyslaw Jagiello,
king of Bohemia (1471-1516), Hungary (1490-1516), was born.
1456 Jul 14, Hungarians
defeated the Ottomans at the Battle of Belgrade, in present-day
Yugoslavia. The 1456 Siege of Belgrade decided the fate of
1456 Jul 22, At the Battle at
Nandorfehervar (Belgrade), the Hungarian army under prince Janos
Hunyadi beat sultan Murad II. The siege of Belgrade had fallen into
stalemate when a spontaneous fight broke out between a rabble of
Crusaders, led by the Benedictine monk John of Capistrano, and the
city's Ottoman besiegers. The melee soon escalated into a major
battle, during which the Hungarian commander, Janos Hunyadi, led a
sudden assault that overran the Turkish camp, ultimately compelling
the wounded Sultan Mehmet II to lift the siege and retreat.
(MC, 7/22/02)(PC, 1992, p.150)(HNPD, 7/23/98)
1456 Aug 11, Janos Hunyadi
(69), Hungarian Prince and general strategist died of plague at
about age 49.
(PC, 1992, p.150)(MC, 8/11/02)
1457 Nov 23, Ladislaus V
(posthumous), king of Hungary and Bohemia, died at 17.
1458 Jan 24, Matthias Corvinus
(1443-1490), the son of John Hunyadi, was elected king of Hungary.
Under his rule Hungary was the most important state in central
Europe. For his fighting force he ordered every 20 houses to provide
one horse soldier. "Husz" is 20 in Hungarian and so the light
cavalryman became know as a Hussar. His illuminated breviary is held
by the Vatican library.
(WUD, 1994, p.1672)(Sky, 9/97, p.26)(HN, 1/24/99)
1490 Apr 6, Matthias Corvinus
(b.1443), king of Hungary and Croatia (1458-1590), died. He has
assembled one of Europe’s finest libraries, 2nd in size only to that
in the Vatican. When Hungary later fell to the Turks the library was
lost. In 2008 Marcus Tanner authored “The Raven King: Matthias
Corvinus and the Fate of His Lost Library."
1503 Mar 10, Ferdinand I, Holy
Roman Emperor (1558-1564), was born. He was King of Bohemia and
Hungary from 1526-1564.
(HN, 3/10/01)(WUD, 1994 p.523)
1514 George Dozsa, soldier of
fortune, instigated a peasant’s revolt in Hungary. He was later
captured and grilled alive.
1521 Suleiman I, the Ottoman
Sultan, conquered Belgrade and invaded Hungary.
1526 Nov 9, Jews were expelled
from Pressburg, Hungary, by Maria of Hapsburg.
1526 Ferdinand of Austria was
elected King of Bohemia and inaugurated the Austro-Hungarian state.
(TL-MB, 1988, p.13)(WSJ, 7/14/99, p.A23)
1529 May 27, 30 Jews of Posing,
Hungary, charged with blood ritual, were burned at stake.
1529 Sep 8, The Ottoman Sultan
Suleiman re-entered Buda and established John Zapolyai as the puppet
king of Hungary.
1529 The Ottomans sieged Vienna
in a key battle of world history. The Ottoman Empire reached its
peak with the Turks settled in Buda on the left bank of the Danube
after failing in their siege of Vienna.
(WSJ, 3/27/96, p.A-16)(TL-MB, 1988, p.13)
1532 Croat captain and diplomat
Nikola Jurišić (1490-1549) defended the small border fort of Kőszeg
(Kingdom of Hungary) with only 700–800 Croatian soldiers with no
cannons and few guns, preventing the advance of the Turkish army of
120,000–140,000 toward Vienna.
1538 Feb 24, Ferdinand of
Hapsburg and John Zapolyai, the two kings of Hungary, concluded the
peace of Grosswardein.
1541 Suleiman I annexed
southern and central Hungary. The Turkish Ottomans occupied
Budapest, Hungary, until 1546.
(TL-MB, 1988, p.16)(Sm, 3/06, p.76)
1544 The Turks invaded Hungary
for the third time and seized the crown jewels. (TL-MB, 1988, p.16)
1552 The Turks invaded Hungary
again with a victory at the Battle Szegedin. Istvan Dobo led the
defense of Eger against the Turks. The siege of Eger lasted 38 days.
(TL-MB, 1988, p.18)(Hem., 6/98, p.126)
1556 Sep 13, Charles V and
Maria of Hungary marched into Spain.
1566 Sep 7, Suleiman I
(b.1494), Great Law Giver and sultan of Turkey (1520-66), died at
Szigetvar, Hungary, as his troops besieged a fortress defended by
Croatian-Hungarian nobleman Miklos Zrinyi. Suleiman’s great empire
began a gradual decline under his slothful son, Selim II. Suleiman
the Magnificent, during his reign, had commissioned the architect
Sinan to build the Suleymanye, perhaps the finest mosque ever
(TL-MB, 1988, p.21)(WSJ, 4/29/99, p.A24)(SFC,
1576 Oct 12, Rudolf II, the
king of Hungary and Bohemia, succeeded his father, Maximillian II,
as Holy Roman Emperor.
(TL-MB, 1988, p.22)(HN, 10/12/98)
1586 The Turks attacked the
fortress at Eger again. The mercenary occupants capitulated.
(Hem., 6/98, p.126)
1595 Oct 28, Battle at
Giurgevo: Sigmund Bathory of Transylvania beat the Turks.
1619?-1637 Ferdinand ruled as king of Hungary.
(WUD, 1994, p.524)
1630 Mate Szepsy Laczko
described the method for producing Tokaj wine made from botrytized
(WSJ, 10/5/00, p.A24)
1637 Ferdinand II Holy Roman
emperor, king of Bohemia and king of Hungary, died.
(WUD, 1994, p.524)
1859 The onion-domed Great
Synagogue was erected in the Jewish quarter of Budapest, Hungary.
(Sm, 3/06, p.76)
1664 Jan 21, Count Miklos of
Zrinyi set out to battle the Turkish invasion army.
1664 Aug 1, The Turkish army
was defeated by French and German troops at St. Gotthard, Hungary.
1671 Apr 30, Peter Zrinyi (49),
Hungarian banished to Croatia, was beheaded.
1681 Nov 9, Hungarian
parliament promised Protestants freedom of religion.
1686 Jul 8, The Austrians took
Buda, Hungary, from the Turks and annexed the country. Hapsburg rule
lasted to 1918.
(HN, 7/8/98)(Sm, 3/06, p.76)
1687 Aug 12, At the Battle of
Mohacs, Hungary, Charles of Lorraine defeated the Turks.
1732-1809 Joseph Haydn, Austrian composer, wrote
some 175 baritone pieces for his patron, the Hungarian prince
Nickolaus Esterhazy, who played the complex stringed instrument. The
Canadian scholar David Schroeder wrote: Haydn and the
(CFA, '96,Vol 179, p.42)(WUD, 1994,
p.651)(WSJ, 8/26/97, p.A14)
1740 Oct 20, Maria Theresa
became ruler of Austria, Hungary and Bohemia upon the death of her
father, Holy Roman Emperor Charles VI.
1769 Wolfgang von Kempelen of
Hungary invented the Automoton Chess Player. It was 1st demonstrated
to the Austrian court in 1770. In 2001 the deception was analyzed by
James W. Cook in his book "The Arts of Deception." In 2002 Tom
Standage authored "The Turk," an examination of the 18th century
fascination with automatons.
(WSJ, 7/12/01, p.A14)(WSJ, 4/12/02, p.W12)
1795 May 20, Ignac Martinovics,
Hungarian physicist, revolutionary, was beheaded.
1781 May 1, Emperor Josef II
decreed protection of population.
1787 Aug 17, Jews were granted
permission in Budapest, Hungary, to pray in groups.
1802 Aug 13, Nikolaus Lenau,
German poet (Faust, Die Albigenser), was born in Hungary.
1802 Sep 19, Lajos Kossuth
(d.1894), Hungarian statesman and president, was born. "The
instinctive feeling of a great people is often wiser than its wisest
1811 Franz Liszt was born near
Sopron. He was the son of a steward of the Esterhazy family.
(Hem., 6/98, p.128)
1818 Jul 1, Ignaz Semmelweis
(d.1865), Hungarian gynecologist, was born. He later connected
childbed fever to doctors who spread of germs due to their failure
to wash their hands. In 2003 Sherwin B. Nuland authored "The
Doctors' Plague: Germs, Childbed Fever and the Strange Story of
(MC, 7/1/02)(SSFC, 11/23/03, p.M3)
1823 Mar 3, Guyla Andrássy Sr.,
premier of Hungary (1867-71), was born.
1825 The Hungarian Academy of
Sciences (MTA) was founded.
1846 May 29, Albert Gyorgy,
earl Apponyi, Hungarian minister of Education, was born.
1847 Apr 10, American newspaper
publisher Joseph Pulitzer (d.1911) was born in Mako, Hungary. "What
is everybody's business is nobody's business -- except the
(CFA, '96, p.44)(AP, 4/10/97)(AP, 8/30/98)
1847 Hungarian doctor Ignac
(Ignaz) Semmelweis (1818-1865) told his fellow doctors to start
washing their hands.
(SFEC, 12/8/96, Z 1 p.2)(Econ, 3/13/10,
1848 Mar 3, Lajos Kossuth made
a speech demanding parliamentary government for Hungary and
constitutional government for the rest of Austria.
1848 Mar 15, In Hungary an
uprising against Habsburg rule began in front of the national museum
in Budapest. This was later remembered as a national holiday.
(Reuters, 3/15/07)(Econ, 3/24/12, p.52)
1848 Mar 23, Hungary proclaimed
its independence of Austria.
1848 Nov, Emperor Ferdinand
abdicated in favor of Franz Joseph.
1848 Sep 28, Lajos Kossuth,
finance minister, assumed control of the revolution in Hungary.
1848-1849 Lajos Kossuth (1802-1894) led a failed
revolt for Hungarian independence.
(Sm, 3/06, p.81)
1849 Apr 14, Lajos Kossuth was
named Governor and virtual dictator of the newly declared Hungarian
Republic. Hungary proclaimed independence from the Great Church in
Debrecen, temporarily ending 150 years of Hapsburg rule.
1849 Aug 11, Lajos Kossuth
abdicated in favor of Gen. Gorgey as Russia intervened in the
1849 Aug 13, Hungary’s Gen.
Gorgey surrendered to the Russian forces. Russia gave Hungary back
(PC, 1992 ed,
1853 Vilmos Zsolnay founded a
pottery in Pecs, Hungary, that became renowned for its colored tile.
The Zsolnay factory used a 5-tower mark from about 1878, which
symbolized the 5 medieval churches in Pecs.
(SFC, 8/31/05, p.G3)
1854 Elisabeth of Bavaria (16)
married the Habsburg Emp. Franz Josef II (23).
(WSJ, 12/8/97, p.A13)
1855 Oct 12, Arthur Nikisch,
later conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic, was born in
1861 Imre Madach (1823-1864),
Hungarian writer, authored “The Tragedy of Man," a “Paradise Lost"
for the industrial age.
1865 Aug 13, Ignaz Semmelweis
(b.1818), Hungarian gynecologist, died from an infection in Vienna
after being beaten up by warders in an asylum.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ignaz_Semmelweis)(Econ, 3/13/10, p.57)
1865 Sep 23, Emmuska Orczy
(d.1947), baroness and writer, was born in Tarnaors, Hungary. Her
family moved to London in 1880. Her books included "The Scarlet
1867 The Austro-Hungarian
Compromise of 1867 (called the Ausgleich in German and the Kiegyezés
in Hungarian), inaugurated the empire's dual structure in place of
the former unitary Austrian Empire (1804–67). From this time onwards
common expenditures were allocated 70% to Austria and 30% to
Hungary. This split had to be negotiated every 10 years.
1867-1994 In 1995 "A History of Modern Hungary" by
Joerg K. Hoensch covered this period and was translated by Kim
Traynor. 2nd edition. New York and London: Longman.
1869 Mark Pick founded a
sausage company in Szeged.
(SFC, 3/21/97, p.D2)
1870 The Gerbeaud confectioner
opened on Vaci Utca, a pedestrian street in Pest.
(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T5)
1870-1948 Franz Lehar, composer of operettas. His
work included "The Merry Widow."
(WUD, 1994, p.819)(WSJ, 6/10/97, p.A16)
1873 Jan 7, Adolph Zukor, movie
producer, director, executive (Paramount), was born in Hungary.
1873 Nov 17, Budapest was
formed from 2 rival cities, Buda and Obuda on the west bank of the
Danube and Pest on the east bank.
1874 Mar 24, Harry Houdini
(d.1926), magician, escape artist, was born as Erik Weisz (Ehrich
Weiss) in Budapest. Young Ehrich Weiss emigrated with his parents to
New York and then to Wisconsin (1878). Sometime around 1891 he and a
partner in a magic act billed themselves as the Brothers Houdini, in
homage to French magician Eugčne Robert-Houdin. As Harry Houdini,
Weiss became world-famous for his mind-boggling escapes. At age 43
he had a volcanic love affair with the widow of Jack London,
Charmian. In 1996 Kenneth Silverman wrote the biography: "Houdini!!!
The Career of Ehrich Weiss."
(WSJ, 10/29/96, p.A21)(HN, 3/24/98)(SFC, 7/7/98,
p.B3)(WSJ, 4/22/99, A10)(HNQ, 5/16/99)
1877 Jul 27, Ernst von
Dohnanyi, composer (Message to Posterity), was born in Hungary.
1878 Jan 12, Ferenc Molnar,
Hungarian-US playwright (A Pal Utrai Fiuk), was born.
1878 Jul 13, The Treaty of
Berlin was the final act of the Congress of Berlin (13 June – 13
July 1878), by which the United Kingdom, Austria-Hungary, France,
Germany, Italy, Russia and the Ottoman Empire under Sultan Abdul
Hamid II revised the Treaty of San Stefano signed on 3 March the
same year. The Treaty of San Stefano had ended the Russo-Turkish War
of 1877-78. The Congress of Berlin divided the Balkans among
European powers. The Slavic converts to Islam in the Sandzak region
of southwestern Serbia were separated from their ethnic cousins in
(AP, 7/13/97)(HN, 7/13/98)(WSJ, 6/16/99, p.A20)
1878 Bosnia came under
Austro-Hungarian rule. This continued until 1918. A representative
from Vienna governed the area.
(Econ, 11/26/05, p.65)(Econ, 10/20/07, p.72)
1879 The Tisza River overflowed
and destroyed 5,500 of 5,800 houses in the town of Szeged.
(Hem., 6/98, p.127)
1882 Oct 20, Bela Lugosi
(d.1956), film actor, was born in Lugos, Hungary, as Bela Blasko. He
is famous for his portrayal of Count Dracula (1931).
1884 The Hungarian State Opera
House in Budapest was built in Italian Renaissance style.
(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T4)
1885 Apr 16, Leo Weiner,
composer (Fasching), was born in Hungary.
1888 Dec 19, Fritz Reiner, US
conductor (Chicago Symphony Orch), was born in Budapest, Hungary.
1892 Mar 29, Jozsef Mindszenty,
[Joseph Prehm], Hungarian cardinal, was born.
1892 Sep 5, Joseph Szigeti,
Budapest Hungary, violinist (Violinist Notebook 1933), was born.
1892 A green steel Elizabeth
bridge across the Danube connected Komarom in Hungary to Komarno in
Slovakia, both part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Its nearby twin
was built in 1910 and rebuilt after detonation by Nazi German troops
during World War II.
1894 Mar 20, Lajos Kossuth
(91), Hungarian freedom fighter, president (1849), died.
1895 May 26, Paul Lukas, actor
(Watch on the Rhine, Sphynx), was born in Budapest, Hungary.
1895 The Central Market Hall
was built in Budapest, Hungary.
(Sm, 3/06, p.82)
1896 Hungary celebrated the
1,000 the anniversary of the arrival of the Magyars.
(SSFC, 10/11/15, p.M3)
1896 The first subway in Europe
was installed under Andrassy Ut in downtown Pest.
(WSJ, 12/26/96, p.A4)
1897 Jun 7, George Szell,
conductor (Metropolitan 1942-45), was born in Budapest, Hungary.
1897 The 500 foot long Central
Market Hall in Budapest opened.
(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T5)
1898 Sep 10, Empress Elisabeth
of Bavaria (60), Queen of Hungary and wife of Emp. Franz Josef II,
was assassinated in Geneva by the Italian anarchist Luigi Luccheni.
(EWH, 1968, p.744)(WSJ, 12/8/97, p.A13)
1899 Nov 18, Music conductor
Eugene Ormandy was born in Budapest, Hungary.
1900 Jan 5, Dennis Gabor,
Hungarian-British physicist, inventor of 3D laser photography, was
born. He was awarded a Nobel Prize in 1971. [see Jan 5]
(HN, 6/5/98)(MC, 1/5/02)
1900 Jan 13, To combat Czech
nationalism, Emperor Franz Joseph of Austria-Hungary decreed that
German would be the language of the imperial army.
1901 Apr 29, Anti Semitic riot
took place in Budapest.
1902 Mar 23, Kálmán Tisza (71),
premier of Hungary (1875-90), died.
1902 Jun 23, Germany,
Austria-Hungary, and Italy renewed the Triple Alliance for a 12 year
1902 Nov 17, Eugene Paul
Wigner, Hungarian-born mathematician and physicist, was born. He won
the Nobel Prize in 1963.
(HN, 11/17/00)(MC, 11/17/01)
1903 Jan 3, The Bulgarian
government renounced the treaty of commerce tying it to
1903 Feb 19, The
Austria-Hungary government decreed a mandatory two year military
1903 The Gresham Palace Hotel
was completed in Budapest, Hungary.
(Sm, 3/06, p.81)
1905 Sep 5, Arthur Koestler
(d.1983), Hungarian novelist and essayist, was born. He wrote about
communism in “Darkness at Noon" (1941) and “The Ghost in the
(HN, 9/5/98)(SFEC, 1/2/00, BR p.5)(WSJ, 8/26/06,
1905 Oct 14, Eugene Fodor,
Hungarian-born travel writer, was born.
1905 The neo-Gothic Parliament
building was constructed in Budapest, Hungary.
(Sm, 3/06, p.79)
1906 Jun 26, Ferenc Szisz of
Hungary won the first French Grand Prix. Szisz won the race in a 13
liter, 90 horsepower Renault.
(HNQ, 7/25/00)(AHDD, p.262)
1906 Dec 2, Peter Carl Goldmark
(d.1977), engineer, was born in Budapest, Hungary. He developed the
first commercial color television and the long-playing phonograph
(HN, 12/2/00)(AP, 12/2/06)
1907 Apr 18, Miklos Rozsa,
movie composer (Atomic Cafe, Fedora), was born in Budapest, Hungary.
1907 Aug 15, Hungarian
violinist Joseph Joachim (b.1831), widely regarded as one of the
most significant violinists of the 19th century, died in Berlin.
1908 Jan 15, Edward Teller
(d.2003), US physicist known as the "Father of the H-bomb," was born
in Budapest. In 2001 he authored his "Memoirs."
(HN, 1/15/99)(WSJ, 10/30/01, p.A21)(SFC, 9/10/03,
1908 Feb 1, Movie producer and
animator George Pal was born in Austria-Hungary.
1908 Victor Vasarely, the
father of op art, was born in Pecs.
(Hem., 6/98, p.128)
1909 Feb 16, Serbia mobilized
against Austria and Hungary.
1909 Mar 8, Pope Pius X lifted
the church ban on interfaith marriages in Hungary.
1909 Ferenc Molnar (1878-1952),
Hungarian dramatist and writer, wrote “Liliom," which later was
turned into the musical “Carousel" (1945). During WWII he emigrated
to the US.
1911 Oct 29, Joseph Pulitzer
(1847), Hungary-born American newspaperman, died in Charleston, S.C.
In 2002 Denis Brian authored "Pulitzer: A Life." In 2010 James
McGrath Morris authored “Pulitzer: A Life in Politics, Print , and
1912 Oct 21, Georg Solti,
conductor (Fidelio), was born in Budapest, Hungary.
1913 Oct 18, Austrian-Hungary
demanded that Serbia and Albania leave.
1913 Andre de Toth (d.2002),
film director, was born in Mako, Hungary, as Sasvrai Farkasfalvi
Tothfalusi Toth Endre Antal Mihaly.
(SFC, 11/1/02, p.A28)
1914 Jun 28, Austrian Archduke
Francis Ferdinand, heir to Austria-Hungary, and his wife, Sofia,
were assassinated in Sarajevo, Bosnia, by a Serb nationalist. As the
royal couple rode through the streets of Sarajevo in an open touring
car, seven young radicals from an obscure Serbian-Bosnian
nationalist group, called the Black Hand, lay in wait. An initial
assassination attempt failed, but a wrong turn brought the car near
Gavrilo Princip, who fired two shots at point-blank range into the
couple's bodies. Within minutes, both the Archduke and Sophia were
dead. Princip was arrested, but political tensions were so high
between Austria-Hungary and Serbia that war broke out as a result.
Like falling dominoes, international alliances brought one country
after another into the conflict. The event triggered World War I. In
2011 Adam Hochschild authored “To End All Wars: A Story of Loyalty
(V.D.-H.K.p.252, 284-285,290)(AP, 6/28/97)(HNPD,
6/28/98)(Econ, 6/4/11, p.93)
1914 Jul 23, Austria and
Hungary issued an ultimatum to Serbia after the assassination of
Archduke Ferdinand; the dispute led to World War I.
1914 Jul 26, Austrian-Hungary
condemned a Serbian ultimatum.
1914 Jul 28, Austria-Hungary
declared war on Serbia, beginning World War I. The New York Stock
Exchange closed for 4 1/2 months.
(CFA, '96, p.50)(HN, 7/28/98)
1914 Aug 12, Great Britain
declared war on Austria-Hungary.
1915 Jan 2, Karl Goldmark
(b.1830), Hungarian composer (Queen of Saba), died in Vienna.
1915 May 23, Italy declared war
on Austria-Hungary in World War I.
(AP, 5/23/97)(HN, 5/23/98)
1916 Nov 21, Franz Jozef I,
King of Austria and Hungary, died.
1916 Charles I took the throne
and worked for peace as the Austro-Hungarian empire neared its end.
He abdicated at the end of the war in 1918 and died in Portugal in
1922 at age 34. In 2003 the Vatican attributed a miracle to the last
emperor of Austria-Hungary, paving the way for the eventual
beatification and sainthood of Charles I.
1917 Sep 8, The battle of
Marasesti, begun on August 6, ended. This was the last major battle
between the German Empire and the Kingdom of Romania on the Romanian
front during World War I. The Battle of Mărășești kept the
northeastern region of the country free from occupation. Romania
lost over 27,000 men, including 610 officers, while Germany and
Austria-Hungary lost over 47,000.
1917 Dec 7, The US declared war
on Austria-Hungary with only one dissenting vote in Congress and
became the 13th country to do so.
1918 Mar 3, Germany,
Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, the Ottoman Empire and Russia signed the
Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, which ended Russian participation in World
War I. Germany and Austria forced Soviet Russia to sign the Peace of
Brest, which called for the establishment of 5 independent
countries: Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine. The
Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, which ended Russian participation in World
War I, was annulled by the November 1918 armistice. The treaty
deprived the Soviets of White Russia.
(HN, 3/3/99)(LHC, 3/1/03)(AP, 3/3/08)
1918 Oct 18, Czechs seized
Prague, renounced Hapsburg's rule and declared independence from the
Austro-Hungarian Empire. Masaryk proclaimed the foundation of
Czechoslovakia from Pittsburgh, Pa.
1918 Oct 31, Stephen Tisza,
Hungarian PM (-1917), was assassinated by soldiers.
1918 The Gellert Pool was
constructed at the Gellert Hotel on the Buda side of Budapest,
(SFEC, 8/8/99, p.T1,4)(Sm, 3/06, p.76)
1919 Jan 27, Endre Ady
(b.1877), Hungarian lyric poet, died.
(Sm, 3/06, p.79)(www.kirjasto.sci.fi/ady.htm)
Feb 11, Eva Gabor (d.1995), actress, was born in Budapest, Hungary.
1919 Aug 1, In Hungary Bela
Kun's government fell in the face of invasions from both the Czechs,
Romanians and a French-sponsored counter-revolutionary force, led by
Admiral Miklos Horthy de Nagybanya, which succeeded in establishing
Horthy in government for many years.
1920 Mar 1, Miklos Horthy
(1868-1957) became Regent of Hungary and continued to 1944.
1920 Jun 4, The Treaty of
Trianon, signed at Versailles, was forced upon Hungary by the
victorious Allies after WWII and resulted in Hungary giving up
nearly three-fourths of its territory to Romania, Czechoslovakia and
the Kingdom of Serbs, Croat and Slovenes. Hungary lost more than
half its population, including some 3 million Hungarians. Hungary
ceded the hills of Transylvania to Romania.
1920 Jun 4, After the treaty of
Trianon was signed the Danube river became the official border
between Czechoslovakia and Hungary.
1921 Nov 5, Gyorgy Cziffra,
Hungarian-French pianist, was born.
1922 Apr 1, Karl I (b.1887),
leader of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, died. Also known in the West
as Charles I, he took the throne in 1916 and worked for peace,
abdicating at the end of World War I, a few years before his death.
In 2004 he was beatified by Pope John Paul VI.
1922 Oct 31, Andras Hegedues
(d.1999), made Premier in 1955, was born in Szilsarkany.
(SFC, 10/26/99, p.B4)
1922 Hungary’s Regent Miklos
Horthy passed the first of four anti-Jewish laws, limiting the
number of Jewish students at universities.
(Econ, 11/9/13, p.59)
1922 Their was a rainfall of
spiders over Hungary.
(SFC, 5/30/98, p.E4)
1923 Dutch physicist Dirk
Coster (1889-1950) and Hungarian chemist George Charles de Hevesy
(1889-1966) found element 72, Hafnium. It was identified in zircon
(a zirconium ore) from Norway, by means of X-ray spectroscopic
analysis. It was named in honor of the city in which the discovery
was made, from the Latin name "Hafnia" meaning
1924 Jul 5, Janos Starker,
cellist (Chic Symph 1953-58), was born in Budapest, Hungary.
1924 Ferenc Molnar (b.1878),
Hungarian playwright, wrote "The Play’s the Thing."
(WSJ, 5/2/96, p.A-13)
1925 Jul 17, Laszlo Nagy,
Hungarian poet, was born.
1925-1939 Joseph Roth (1894-1939), an Austrian
Jew, was assigned to Paris by a Frankfurt newspaper. After one year
the job was given to a Nationalist. He stayed in Paris and wrote for
emigre publications and railed against Germany and racism in his
essays and novels. In 2004 his selected essays appeared in English
as "Report From a Parisian Paradise: Essays from France, 1925-1939."
(SSFC, 1/11/04, p.M4)(Econ, 2/2/13, p.74)
1927 Erno Laszlo (1891-1973)
opened the Laszlo Institute for Scientific Cosmetology in Budapest.
In 1939 he opened the Laszlo Institute on Fifth Ave in NYC.
(Econ, 11/29/03, p.18)
1928 Feb 1, Tom Lantos, a
Jewish Holocaust survivor, was born in Budapest, Hungary. Lantos
later earned a doctorate in economics at UC Berkeley and served as a
US Congressman from California (1980-2008).
(SFC, 1/3/08, p.A10)
1929 Aug 28, Istvan Kertesz,
conductor (Budapest Opera 1953-57/London Philharmonic), was born in
1929 In Nagyrev, Hungary, some
40 men were poisoned by their wives or daughters-in-law with arsenic
laced duck soup, tea and wine. 6 local women were sentenced to die,
but only 2 were executed. The midwife ringleader, who extracted the
arsenic from flypaper, committed suicide. The 2003 Hungarian film
“Hiccup" was based on the poisonings.
(WSJ, 5/20/04, p.A1)
1930 George Soros, billionaire,
was born in Budapest.
(SFEC, 10/1/96, p.A1)
1932 Joseph Roth (1894-1939),
an Austrian-Jewish writer, authored “The Radetzky March," a novel of
the decline of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. It was translated into
English in 1995. Roth’s 1938 sequel was translated to English in
(Econ, 2/2/13, p.74)
1934 Oct 9, In Marseilles, a
Macedonian revolutionary associated with Croat terrorists in Hungary
assassinated King Alexander of Yugoslavia and French Foreign
Minister Louis Barthou. The two had been on a tour of European
capitals in quest of an alliance against Nazi Germany. The
assassinations brought the threat of war between Yugoslavia and
Hungary, but confrontation was prevented by the League of Nations.
1935 Denes Koromzay (d.2001 at
88) founded the Hungarian String Quartet. In 1962 he moved to
Boulder, Colorado, and the group was named resident ensemble at the
Univ. of Colorado.
(SFC, 7/18/01, p.C16)
1936 Mar 8, Gabor Szabo,
Hungarian jazz pianist (Perfect Circle), was born.
1936 Mar 23, Italy, Austria and
Hungary signed Pact of Rome.
1936 Bela Kun (b.1886),
Hungarian leftist revolutionary, died. He is believed to have met
his end in one of Stalin's innumerable purges.
1937 A Hungarian brigade joined
the Spanish civil war to fight the fascists.
(MT, Fall. ‘97, p.4)
1938 Apr 27, King Zog of
Albania married Geraldine Apponyi (22) of Hungary.
(SFC, 10/28/02, p.A17)
1938 Sep 29, British, French,
German and Italian leaders signed the Munich Agreement, which was
aimed at appeasing Adolf Hitler by allowing Nazi annexation of
Czechoslovakia's Sudetenland, inhabited by a German-speaking
minority. The treaty ceded three areas of Czechoslovakia to other
powers: the Sudetenland was annexed into Germany, the Teschen
district was given to Poland, and parts of Slovakia went to Hungary.
British PM Neville Chamberlain gained a brief peace agreement from
Hitler at Munich and without consulting the Czechs agreed that Nazi
forces could occupy Sudetenland. Some mark this "appeasement policy"
as the decisive event of the century. Chamberlain predicted "peace
in our time." French PM Edouard Daladier was very depressed from the
meeting. In 1980 Telford Taylor published "Munich: The Price of
Peace." It is a detailed political & diplomatic history of the
1930's in Europe, culminating in the Munich conference. Taylor later
helped write the rules for Nuremberg Trials. In 2008 David Vaughan
authored “Battle for the Airwaves: Radio and the 1938 Munich
6/9/96, Z1 p.5)(SFC, 6/16/96, Z1 p.6)(WSJ, 6/8/98, p.A21)(AP,
9/29/06)(SFC, 5/26/98, p.B2)(Econ, 10/11/08, p.115)
1938 Lazlo Biro [Laszlo Biro]
of Hungary invented the ball-point pen. He fled Hungary in 1943 and
patented the ballpoint in Argentina.
(TL, 1988, p.111)(SFEC, 5/23/99, p.B7)
1939 Feb 2, Hungary broke
relations with the Soviet Union.
1939 Feb 24, Hungary signed an
anti-Communist pact with Italy, Germany and Japan.
1939 Mar 15, The Republic of
Carpatho-Ukraine, led by Avhustyn Voloshyn (d.1945), declared
independence amid the Nazi dismemberment of Czechoslovakia.
Independence ending that same evening by an invasion from Hungary.
In 1946 the area became part of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist
Republic, as the Zakarpattia Oblast ('Transcarpathian Oblast').
After the break-up of the Soviet Union, it became part of
independent Ukraine as Zakarpattia Oblast.
1939 Nov 30, Bela Kun (53),
[Balazs Kolozsvary], Hungarian revolutionary, died.
1939-1945 The Hungarian Gendarmerie carried out
orders to round up Jews for Nazi death camps where some 550,000
(SFC, 2/25/00, p.A16)
1940 Sister Ida Peterfy (d.2000
at 77) founded a religious education order of nuns. She kept the
order together during the war under the cover of a secretarial
school and moved to Los Angeles in 1956.
(SFC, 2/12/00, p.A21)
1940 Bela Bartok, Hungarian
composer, fled Budapest, Hungary, and arrived in New York.
(WSJ, 8/18/95, p.A-1)
1941 Apr, Hungary under Admiral
Miklos Horthy (1868-1957, entered WWII as an ally of Germany.
1941 Aug 2, Jews were expelled
from Hungarian Ruthenia.
1941 Arthur Koestler
(1905-1983), Hungarian novelist and essayist, authored “Darkness at
Noon," a story of life in Stalin’s Russia.
(HN, 9/5/98)(SFEC, 1/2/00, BR p.5)(WSJ, 8/26/06,
1942 Jan 23, At Novi Sad,
Serbia, some 1200 people (predominantly Jewish), rounded up over a
period of three days, were shot along the shores of the Danube.
Their bodies were dumped into the frozen waters. Sandor Kepiro
(1914-2011), a Hungarian gendarmerie officer, participated in the
mass murder. In 1944 he was sentenced to 10 years in prison for his
part in the atrocities, but conviction was later annulled. Kepiro,
who was at the top of the Simon Wiesenthal Center's most-wanted war
criminals list, returned to Hungary in 1996 after living for decades
in Argentina. In 2011 Kepiro (96) was charged with war crimes in the
slaughter, but was cleared by a court on July 18, 2011.
2/14/11)(AP, 7/18/11)(AP, 9/3/11)
1942 Sep 4, Soviet planes
bombed Budapest in the war's first air raid on the Hungarian
1942 The novel "Embers" by
Sandor Marai was published in Budapest. Marai committed in San Diego
in 1989. An English translation was published in 2001.
(WSJ, 10/26/01, p.W10)
1943 Dec 11, U.S. Secretary of
State, Cordell Hull, demanded that Hungary, Rumania, and Bulgaria
withdraw from the war.
1943 Laszlo Biro, fled his
native Hungary to Argentina, where he patented his ballpoint pen.
England soon manufactured some 30,000 pens for use by RAF navigators
in unpressurized cockpits, where fountain pens failed.
(SFEC, 5/23/99, p.B7)
1944 Jan, In Hungary Sandor
Kepiro (1914-2011) was sentenced to 10 years in prison for his part
in the Jan, 1942, atrocities at Novi Sad, Serbia, in which 1,200
Serb and Jewish civilians were killed by Hungarian forces, who
raided Serbia in the wake of the Nazi occupation of Yugoslavia. He
was freed by Hungary's fascist regime shortly after his trial and
fled to Argentina after the war. In 1946, the Communist government
of Hungary tried him again and sentenced him to 14 years in
absentia. He returned to Budapest in 1996.
1944 Mar 19, Nazi German
soldiers occupied Hungary.
1944 Mar 31, Hungary ordered
all Jews to wear yellow stars.
1944 Apr-Jul, Hungarian
authorities facilitated the deportation of some 437,000 Hungarian
Jews to Auschwitz.
(SFC, 6/7/99, p.A9)(Econ, 4/24/04, p.48)
1944 May 16, The 1st of over
180,000 Hungarian Jews reached Auschwitz.
1944 May, A Budapest census
identified houses to serve as holding locations for Jews before
moving them to a planned walled ghetto in the city's seventh
district, a precursor to the intended liquidation of the capital's
200,000 Jews in Nazi death camps. In 2016 some 6,300 documents from
census were found in an apartment wall cavity.
1944 May, Laszlo Csatary was
named chief of an internment camp at a brick factory in Kosice, a
Slovakian city under Hungarian rule, from where 12,000 Jews were
deported to Auschwitz and other Nazi death camps. In 1948 he was
convicted in absentia for war crimes in Czechoslovakia and sentenced
to death. He arrived in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia the
following year, became a Canadian citizen in 1955 and worked as an
art dealer in Montreal. He left Canada in 1997 and was arrested in
Hungary in 2012. In 2013 Csatary was indicted in Hungary for war
(AP, 7/18/12)(AP, 6/18/13)
1944 May-1944 Jun, Some 425,000
Jews from Hungary were brought to the Nazi-run Auschwitz
concentration camp in Poland. At least 300,000 were almost
immediately gassed to death. In 2014 German prosecutors charged
Oskar Groening (93) with 300,000 counts of accessory to murder for
serving as as SS guard at the Auschwitz death camp during this
(SFC, 9/16/14, p.A2)
1944 Jun 30, A US B-24H bomber
nicknamed "Miss Fortune," which was returning from a mission in
Germany to its base in Italy, flew into bad weather with 3 others
and were shot down by German gunners over western Hungary. The
remains of Staff Sgt. Martin F. Troy, the tail gunner on the “Miss
Fortune," were recovered in 2007.
1944 Jun, The "Kasztner Train,"
with 1,684 Jews on board, departed Budapest for the safety of
neutral Switzerland. Rudolf Kasztner's negotiations also saved
20,000 Hungarian Jews by diverting them to an Austrian labor camp
instead of a planned transfer to extermination camps. Kasztner, a
Zionist leader in Hungary, headed the Relief and Rescue Committee, a
small Jewish group that negotiated with Nazi officials to rescue
Hungarian Jews in exchange for money, goods and military equipment.
1944 Jul 7, Hungary’s regent
Miklos Horthy issued an order suspending Nazi deportations of
(ON, 10/20/11, p.1)
1944 Jul 9, Raoul Wallenberg, a
Swedish National Guardsman, arrived in Budapest to head the local
office of the US-sponsored War Refugee Board. He had been recruited
in June by a US Embassy official in Stockholm and sent to
Nazi-controlled Budapest under Swedish diplomatic cover. He used US
funds to bribe Nazi officials and saved over 20,000 Hungarian Jews
from Nazi death camps.
(SFC, 5/5/96, p.A-7)(MT, Spg. ‘99, p.18)(WSJ,
1944 Jul 13, Erno Rubik,
inventor (Rubik's cube), was born in Budapest.
1944 Jul 19, Swedish diplomat
Raoul Wallenberg 1st met SS ober Sturmbannfuhrer Adolf Eichmann.
1944 Aug, Hungary’s regent
Miklos Horthy fired his pro-German prime minister and opened peace
talks with the Russians.
(ON, 10/20/11, p.2)
1944 Oct 6, Soviets marched
into Hungary and Czechoslovakia.
1944 Oct 15, Hungary’s regent
Miklos Horthy announced in a radio broadcast that the German Reich
has lost the war and that he was negotiating with the Russians for
Hungarian self-determination. Nazi operatives kidnapped Horthy’s son
and forced him to abdicate and surrender to the Germans.
(ON, 10/20/11, p.2)
1944 Oct 16, In Hungary the
Horthy government fell as Adolf Eichmann returned to Budapest and
immediately ordered the resumption of the Jewish deportation
program. Ferenc Szalasi (1897-1946) of the Arrow Cross Party became
the prime minister.
1944 Oct 16, Ferencz Szalasi,
leader of the extremist right-wing organization Arrow Cross, was put
in charge of the Hungary by the occupying Germans when the Hungarian
government sought an armistice with the Soviet Union. Thousands of
Jews from Budapest were murdered on the banks of the Danube as the
pro-Nazi Arrow Cross party took power. In 2019 divers from ZAKA,
Israeli volunteer group, began scanning the bottom of the Danube
with an underwater sonar near a Budapest bridge where some remains
were recovered several years earlier.
(HNQ, 5/7/99)(Reuters, 1/15/19)
1944 Oct 23, Soviet army
1944 Oct, In Hungary Eduard
Benedek Brunschweiler, a Swiss representative of the International
Red Cross, took charge of the Pannonhalma Abbey and kept it under
Red Cross protection until Soviet forces expelled him in April 1945.
Some 3,000 people, mostly children, spent the end of the war in the
abbey, including dozens of Jews. In 2006 Hungarian officials
unveiled a memorial at the abbey honoring Brunschweiler.
1944 Nov 3, Pro-German
government of Hungary fled.
Nov 7, Hannah Senesh (23), Jewish poet, was executed by Nazis in
Budapest. Hannah Szenes was tortured for several months by the
Gestapo before being executed by the Nazis because she was a member
of the Jewish underground.
1944 Nov 8, In Hungary Jews
under Nazi custody and the command of Adolf Eichmann began marches
of 120 miles to the Austrian border.
(ON, 10/20/11, p.3)
1944 Nov 8, In Hungary Peter
Balazs (18) was fatally beaten to death for failing to wear a yellow
star marking him as a Jew. In 2009 Australia agreed to extradite
Charles Zentai (87) to face charges regarding the fatal beating of
Balazs. In 2012 Australia said Mr Zentai cannot be surrendered for
extradition because the offence of 'war crime' did not exist under
Hungarian law at the time of his alleged criminal conduct.
1944 Dec 3, Hungarian death
march of Jews ended.
1944 Dec 15, In Hungary a gold
train departed Budapest on orders from Adolf Eichmann. In May it was
intercepted by American forces in Austria. Some of the valuables
were requisitioned by US commanders and the rest was later auctioned
in NY and the proceeds given to a UN agency to help Jewish refugees.
Kenneth Alford later authored "The Spoils of World War II."
(SFC, 10/15/99, p.A18)
1944 Dec 24, Adolf Eichmann
fled Hungary to Austria as Soviet troops encircled Budapest. He left
orders for German forces to massacre all the Jews in Budapest.
German Gen. August Schmidthuber, assigned to oversee the mass
execution, cancelled the operation after receiving word from Swedish
diplomat Raoul Wallenberg that the impending carnage would mark him
as a war criminal.
(ON, 10/20/11, p.4)
1944 Dec 27, Sister Sara
Salkahazi was killed by the Arrow Cross, the Hungarian allies of the
Nazis, for hiding Jews in a Budapest building used by her religious
order, the Sisters of Social Service. In 2006 she was beatified by
Pope Benedict XVI.
1944 Hungary’s Admiral Miklos
Horthy passed the 4th of four anti-Jewish laws, outlawing sexual
intercourse between Jews and non-Jews.
(Econ, 11/9/13, p.59)
1944 Some 150,000 Hungarian
troops fought under Nazi command at the Don River. The Red army
killed about 90,000 and thousands died trying to walk back to
(SFC, 8/12/00, p.A11)
1944 Elemerne Marsovsky (aka
Foto Ada), a Hungarian photographer, disappeared, presumably a
victim of the Holocaust.
(SFC, 5/14/98, p.E3)
1944-1956 The apartment building at 60 Andrassy
Blvd. in Budapest was used by the fascist Arrow Cross Party from
1944-1945. The party was responsible for the deportation or
execution of some 500,000 Hungarian Jews. It was then taken over by
the Communist secret police until 1956. The basement was used for
torture. It was later converted to a museum named the "House of
(SFC, 6/14/02, p.E1)
1945 Jan 17, Swedish diplomat
Raoul Wallenberg, credited with saving tens of thousands of Jews,
disappeared in Hungary while in Soviet custody. Raoul Wallenberg was
jailed by the Soviets who believed that he was an American spy. He
had saved more than 20,000 Hungarian Jews from Nazi death camps.
Wallenberg was a graduate of the Univ. of Michigan and studied there
(SFC, 5/5/96, p.A-7)(AP, 1/17/98)(MT, Spg. ‘99,
1945 Jan 18, The German Army
launched its second attempt to relieve the besieged city of Budapest
from the advancing Red Army.
1945 Jan 18, The Red Army
liberated the Budapest ghetto. Some 50,000 Soviet soldiers lost
their lives in the liberation of Budapest.
1945 Jan 20, The Allies signed
a truce with the Hungarians.
1945 Jan 24, A German attempt
to relieve the besieged city of Budapest was finally halted by the
1945 Feb 13, During World War
II, the Soviets captured Budapest, Hungary, from the Germans ending
a 50-day siege in which 159,000 people died.
(HN, 2/13/98)(AP, 2/13/98)(MC, 2/13/02)
1945 Feb 14, The siege of
Budapest ended as the Soviets took the city. Only 785 German and
Hungarian soldiers managed to escape.
1945 Mar 14, Sgt. 1st Class
Marvin Steinford, a native of Iowa, was part of a 10-man crew of a
B-17 bomber which was hit, while returning to its base in Italy from
a mission over Hungary. In 2004 his remains were found in a grave in
the town on Zirc in western Hungary, where he had been buried with
26 Soviet soldiers. In 2009 his remains were returned to the US.
1945 Apr 4, Hungary was
liberated from Nazi occupation (National Day).
1945 May, In Austria US Army
officers and troops plundered a “gold train" on its way to Germany
from Hungary that carried gold, jewels, paintings and other
valuables seized by the Nazis from Jewish families. A 2001 suit
filed in Miami said the army falsely classified it as unidentifiable
and enemy property, which avoided having to return the goods to
their rightful owners. The suit alleged that the US made no effort
to return the goods and lied to Hungarian Jews who sought
information about their property after the war. In 2004 the property
was estimated to be worth ten times its original $200 million
valuation. In 2005 the US government reached a $25.5 million
settlement with families of the Hungarian Holocaust victims for
distribution to needy Holocaust survivors.
(AP, 12/20/04)(SFC, 3/12/05, p.A5)
1945 Sep 26, Bela Bartok
(b.1881), Hungarian pianist and composer, died at age 64.
1945 Nov, Hungary held national
elections. The communists took 17% of the vote.
(Econ, 10/20/12, p.75)
1945 The AVO, Hungary’s State
Security Agency, was formed under Soviet masters. Its first leader
was a Hungarian called Gabor Peter. The role of the AVO was to hunt
out anyone who was even vaguely against the rule of Moscow over
1945-1956 Matyas Rakosi served as General
Secretary of the Hungarian Communist Party.
1945-1990 The era of the Soviet occupation.
(WSJ, 12/27/96, p.A5)
1946 Jul, Hungary’s
hyperinflation peaked at 42 quadrillion per cent a month.
1946 George Mikes (1912-1987),
a Hungarian living in England, published “How to Be An Alien." It
was about a foreigner’s view of England.
(Econ, 12/19/09, p.110)
1946 Prime Minister Laszlo
Bardossy was executed for his role in the deaths of hundreds of
thousands of Jews.
(SFC, 5/5/01, p.D2)
1947 May 30, In Hungary
Soviet-backed communists forced PM Ferenc Nagy (1903-1979) into
exile. Dinnyés Lajos (1901-1961) was appointed as successor and
served as the last non-communist Prime Minister of Hungary until
1948 Oct 24, Franz Lehar,
Austrian-Hungarian composer (Wiener Frauen), died at 78.
1948 Dec 26, Hungarian Cardinal
Mindszenty was arrested.
1948 In Hungary the Manfred
Weiss Steelworks was nationalized and renamed after Matyas Rakosi
(1892-1971), Hungary’s Stalinist leader.
1949 Feb 8, Cardinal Mindszenty
was sentenced to life imprisonment for high treason.
(TOH, 1982, p.1949)
1949 May 15, A general election
with open voting gave complete victory to the Communist controlled
National Independence Front.
(EWH, 1968, p.1188)
1949 May-Dec, Hungarian
Communists were victorious at the polls. They purged their
opponents, proclaimed a new constitution, nationalized all major
industries, and announced a five-year plan.
(WUD, 1994, p.1684)
1949 Jun 16, Laszlo Rajk, the
Hungarian Communist foreign minister, was arrested on charges of
conspiracy. This set off a purge of Hungarian Communists accused of
deviating from the Soviet line.
(EWH, 1968, p.1188)
1949 Aug 7, Hungary announced a
new constitution, similar to that of the Soviet Union.
(EWH, 1968, p.1188)
1949 Oct 15, Laszlo Rajk,
Hungarian Sec. of State and Foreign minister, was hanged.
1949 Dec 28, Hungary decreed
the nationalization of all major industries and announced the start
of a 5-year plan.
(EWH, 1968, p.1188)
1951 Nov 26, Illona Staller,
Italian member of Parliament (La Cicciolina), was born in Budapest,
(MC, 11/26/01)(AP, 11/26/02)
1951 Dec 28, The U.S. paid
$120,000 to free four fliers convicted of espionage in Hungary.
1952-1953 The Alba Regia was a Hungarian microcar
project produced by both the Ministry of Metallurgy and Machine
Industry in conjunction with the Vehicle Developing Institute.
1953 Jul 4, Imre Nagy succeeded
Matyas Rkosi as premier of Hungary.
1954 Mar 21, Paul Selenyi
(b.1884), Hungarian physicist, died in Budapest. He was the first to
record images with an electrostatic marking process. This was the
foundation for Chester Carlson’s Xerox copiers.
1954 Mar 24, Britain opened
trade talks with Hungary.
1954 Jul 4, West Germany beat
Hungary 3-2 to win the 5th World Cup soccer match in Bern, Switz.
1955 Mar 20, Count Mihaly
Karolyi (b.1875), a nationalist who helped form modern Hungary’s 1st
government (1918), died.
1955 May 14, Representatives
from eight Communist bloc countries: Soviet Union, Albania,
Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Hungary, Poland &
Romania, signed the Warsaw Pact in Poland. Andras Hegedues signed
(AP, 5/14/97)(SFC, 10/26/99, p.B4)(MC, 5/14/02)
1955 Nov 12, Alfred Hajós,
Hungarian swimmer (b. 1878), died.
1956 Oct 23, An anti-Stalinist
revolt began in Hungary. As the revolution spread, Soviet forces
started entering the country, and the uprising was put down within
weeks. In 2001 Bela Liptak authored "A Testament of Revolution." In
2006 three books were published that covered Hungary’s October
Revolution: “Failed Illusions" by Charles Gati; “Journey to a
Revolution" by Michael Korda; and Viktor Sebestyen’s “Twelve Days:
The Story of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution."
(SFC, 10/23/96, p.A8)(WSJ, 6/19/01, p.A20)(WSJ,
10/20/06, p.W4)(Econ, 10/21/06, p.94)(AP, 10/23/07)
1956 Oct 24, Soviet troops
invaded Hungary and Imre Nagy became PM of Hungary.
1956 Oct 31, President Dwight
D. Eisenhower praised the promise by Moscow made the previous day of
major concessions to Hungarians in revolt as "the dawning of a new
day" in Eastern Europe. Anti-government demonstrations in Budapest a
week earlier had forced a reshuffling of the Hungarian government
and demands that the new government denounce the Warsaw Pact and
seek liberation from Soviet domination.
1956 Nov 2, Hungary appealed
for UN assistance against Soviet invasion. The Soviets chose Janos
Kadar to form a counter-government.
1956 Nov 4, Russian troops and
tanks attacked Budapest and crushed the Hungarian revolt under
Premier Imre Nagy. Soviet troops marched into the country. Martial
law was proclaimed and mass arrests followed. The UN censured the
USSR. The repression was organized by Yuri Andropov who later became
Chief of the KGB in 1967. 25,000 people were killed. Janos Kadar was
installed by the Soviet Union as head of Hungary's Communist Party.
(WSJ, 12/14/95, p.A-12)(SFC, 10/23/96, p.A8)(WSJ,
12/27/96, p.A5)(AP, 5/22/98)
1956 Nov 8, UN demanded USSR
1956 Nov 14, The Hungarian
revolt was put down.
1956 Nov 22, Melbourne opened
the 16th Olympiad. 65 countries and 4,276 athletes competed. Closing
ceremonies were held on Dec 8. The Netherlands and Spain withdrew
from the summer Olympics in support of Hungary following Russia’s
invasion. 45 athletes from Hungary defected during the games. Egypt,
Lebanon and Iraq boycotted the games in protest over British and
French actions over the Suez Canal. China boycotted protesting the
inclusion of athletes from Taiwan.
(SFEC, 9/10/00, p.T8)(WSJ, 9/15/00, p.A1)(WSJ,
1956 Nov, Austria provided
humanitarian aid to nearly 200,000 Hungarians fleeing their homeland
after Soviet tanks crushed freedom fighters aiming to overthrow
repressive communist rule.
1956 Dec 6, In Hungary
civilians were shot dead during protests in Budapest. A communist
party committee directly governed the leading body of a militia, the
so called Military Council, responsible for the shooting. Party
committee member Bela Biszku was named interior minister in 1957.
1956 Dec 8, In Hungary at least
46 civilians were shot dead during protests in the town of
1956 In Hungary the Festival
microcar, designed by Kalman Szabadi (d.2010), was introduced in
Vac. The car was three meters long, had a conventional door for the
passengers and a gull-wing for the driver, and weighed 380 kilos. It
was powered by the same 298cc engine that BMW built for its Isetta.
Only one car was completed.
1956 George Soros (b.1930), a
Hungarian-born financier, emigrated to the United States.
1957 Janos Kornai (b.1928),
Hungarian economist, authored “Overcentralization." This was the 1st
book by an economist behind the Iron Curtain to examine the command
of “actual socialism" and to criticize central planning.
(WSJ, 1/30/07, p.B15)
1957 In Hungary Bela Biszku
became interior minister in the wake of the anti-Soviet revolution,
when over 220 people who participated in the uprising were executed
and many thousands imprisoned or persecuted. Biszku continued
serving as interior minister to 1961. In 2014 he faced charges with
war crimes over the suppression of the 1956 uprising.
(AP, 1/27/11)(AP, 3/18/14)
1958 Jun 16, Imre Nagy
(b.1896), former Hungarian premier (1956) and symbol of the 1956
uprising against Soviet rule, was hanged by the Communist government
of Janos Kadar.
1960 Sep 13, Leo Weiner,
Hungarian composer (Toldi), died at 75.
1961 Bela Balassa, a Hungarian
economist, authored “The Theory of Economic Integration."
(Econ, 12/10/16, p.74)
1964 May 30, Leo Szilard (66),
Hungarian-US nuclear physicist, died.
1965 Tivadar Soros (1894-1968),
Hungarian lawyer and editor, authored “Maskerado ĉirkaŭ la morto"
(Masquerade (dance) around death. In 2011 it was translated into
English and published as “Masquerade: The Incredible True Story of
How George Soros' Father Outsmarted the Gestapo".
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tivadar_Soros)(Econ 5/20/17, p.26)
1967 Mar 6, Zoltan Kodaly
(b.1882), Hungarian composer, died. His major works, notably the
comic opera Hary Janos, the Psalmus hungaricus, the Peacock
Variations for orchestra and the Dances of Marosszek and Galanta
drew on Magyar folk music.
1968 Aug 3, The Bratislava
statement conceded Czechoslovakia’s right to pursue its own path.
The conference was held in Bratislava, Slovakia, for representatives
of the communist and workers' parties of the People's Republic of
Bulgaria, the Hungarian People's Republic, the German Democratic
Republic, the Polish People's Republic, the Union of Soviet
Socialist Republics, and the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic.
1969 Clifford Irving (b.1930),
American writer, published "Fake," the story of Hungarian art forger
Elmyr de Hory (1906-1976). The int'l. de Hory scam became public in
1967. Irving and De Hory were featured in the 1975 Orson Welles film
"F" for Fake.
1971 Sep 28, Cardinal Josef
Mindszenty (1892-1975) of Hungary, who had spent 15 years in refuge
in the US Embassy in Budapest, ended his exile and flew to Rome.
1973 Feb 20, Joseph Szigeti
(80), Hungarian-US violinist, died.
1973 Apr 16, Istvan Kertesz
(b.1929), Hungarian-born German conductor, drowned. Kertész was the
principal conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra from 1965 to
1973 Andras Hegedues, former
premier, was expelled from the Hungarian Communist Party for his
criticism of the government.
(SFC, 10/26/99, p.B4)
1974 Hungarian professor Erno
Rubik designed the Rubik's Cube. Sales peaked at 100 million in
1980. Some 250 million units were sold worldwide.
(WSJ, 1/11/99, p.R34)(SFC, 8/8/03, p.D1)
1975 May 6, Hungarian
Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty (b.1892) died in Vienna, Austria. The
staunch foe of Communism spent more than seven years in prison in
his homeland and several years in asylum at the US Embassy in
Budapest. He later was granted permission by Hungarian authorities
to live in exile in Vienna.
1975 The Takacs Quartet was
founded by Gábor Takács-Nagy (first violin), Károly Schranz (second
violin), Gábor Ormai (viola), and András Fejér (cello) at the Music
Academy in Budapest. In 2016 Edward A, the current group’s first
violinist, authored “Beethoven for a Later Age: The Journey of a
1976 Dec 11, Hungarian art
forger Elmyr de Hory (b.1906) died of a lethal overdose of
barbiturates in Ibiza, Spain. The 1969 book "Fake" by Clifford
Irving was about De Hory and both Irving and de Hory were featured
in the 1975 Orson Welles film "F" for Fake.
1982 Feb 26, Gabor Szabo
(b.1936), Hungarian jazz pianist (Perfect Circle), died.
1983 Mar 1, Arthur Koestler
(b.1905), Hungary-born British writer (Dialogue With Death), died in
a double suicide with his wife in London. His novels included
"Darkness at Noon" (1940). In 1998 David Cesarani authored "Arthur
Koestler: The Homeless Mind." In 2009 Michael Scammell authored
“Koestler: The Literary and Political Odyssey of a Twentieth-Century
(SSFC, 1/3/10, Books
1984 Gyula Halasz, Hungarian
born photographer (aka Brassai), died. He was a friend of Picasso
and Henry Miller and was known as the "Eye of Paris" for his night
time photographs in the 1930s. His "Secret Paris of the 30s" was
published in 1976. He published 2 books on Henry Miller and
"Conversations With Picasso."
(WSJ, 1/15/98, p.W12)
1986 Oct 22, Albert
Szent-Gyorgyi (b.1893), Hungarian-born bio-chemist, died. He
received the Nobel Prize in 1937 for discovering vitamin-C and the
biochemical steps of catalysis of the fumaric acid in the
tricarboxylic acid cycle.
1988 May 22, Janos Kadar,
installed by the Soviet Union as head of Hungary's Communist Party
in 1956, was replaced by Prime Minister Karoly Grosz.
1988 Sep 26, A Trade and
economic cooperation agreement between the European Community and
Hungary was signed in Brussels.
1988 Nov 13, Antal Dorati (82),
Hungarian-US conductor and composer, died.
1989 Jan 28, In Hungary
official Imre Pozsgay described the 1956 Hungarian Revolution as a
popular uprising, a startling contradiction of the official
Communist view that the revolt was a counter-revolution.
1989 Jun 16, Hungarians paid
homage to former premier Imre Nagy and four associates executed for
leading the anti-Soviet revolt of 1956. At least 250,000 people
attended the ceremonial reburial of PM Imre Nagy and four others
hanged 31 years earlier and buried face down in unmarked graves. The
reburial, broadcast live on TV from Budapest's Heroes' Square, came
as Hungary's communist leadership and the democratic opposition were
beginning to negotiate the country's transition to democracy. Sandor
Racz, a 1956 veteran, called on the world to "help the Soviet Union"
withdraw its troops from Hungary. Viktor Orban, then 26 and later to
become prime minister, also urged the Russians to withdraw but
blasted the country's communist leadership for making the 1956
revolution a taboo subject.
(AP, 6/16/99)(AP, 6/16/09)
1989 Jun 27, Austrian Foreign
Minister Alois Mock (d.2017) and Hungarian Foreign Minister Gyula
Horn made headlines by cutting through fencing that represented the
communist Iron Curtain separating the two countries.
1989 Jul 6, Janos Kadar, who
helped restore Soviet domination and led Hungary for over 30 years
before being replaced in May 1988, died. This same day Hungary's
Supreme Court finally rehabilitated the 1956 revolutionaries.
1989 Jul 12, President Bush
continued his visit to Hungary, where he held talks with officials
and made a speech at Karl Marx University in Budapest.
1989 Aug 19, The "Pan-European
Picnic" helped precipitate the fall nearly three months later of the
Berlin Wall. Members of Hungary's budding opposition organized a
picnic at the border with Austria to press for greater political
freedom and promote friendship with their Western neighbors. Some
600 East Germans got word of the event and turned up among the
estimated 10,000 participants. They took advantage of the excursion
to escape to Austria.
1989 Aug 23, Hungary removed
its physical border defenses with Austria, and in September more
than 13,000 East German tourists in Hungary escaped to Austria.
1989 Sep 10, Hungary gave
permission for thousands of East German refugees and visitors to
emigrate to West Germany.
1989 Oct 7, Hungary's Communist
Party renounced Marxism in favor of democratic socialism during a
party congress in Budapest.
1989 Oct 23, Hungary proclaimed
itself a republic and declared an end to communist rule.
1989 Nov 26, In a national
referendum, voters decided that Hungary's next president would be
chosen by parliament, following free elections.
1989 Nov 28, Romanian gymnast
Nadia Comaneci arrived in New York after escaping her homeland by
way of Hungary.
1989 Andras Torok (34)
published “Budapest: A Critical Guide."
(Sm, 3/06, p.79)
1989 The end of Communism and
the economic cooperation pact of the former Eastern Bloc countries.
(WSJ, 12/4/95, p.B-8A)
1990 Mar, Several people were
killed and hundreds injured in clashes between Romanians and ethnic
Hungarians in the Transylvanian city of Targu Mures. The Szeklers
make up about a third of Romania's 1.4 million Hungarian minority.
1990 May, In Hungary Gyula Horn
became president of the Socialist Party, which he had helped shape
out of the ruins of the former communist party. The party had just
been soundly defeated in the first democratic elections in over four
1991 Feb 15, In Visegrad,
Hungary, a declaration of co-operation was signed by Poland,
Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. The 4 became known as the
1991 Aug 16, Pope John Paul the
Second began the first-ever papal visit to Hungary.
1991 Dec 16, "Europe
Agreements" are signed with Poland, Hungary and Czechoslovakia.
1991 Dec, Hungarian officials
discovered 11 tons of rocket launchers and automatic weapons being
loaded on trucks headed for Croatia in violation of a UN arms
embargo. They had been labeled as Chilean humanitarian aid for Sri
Lanka. In Chile Col. Gerardo Huber, who directed purchases at the
army's weapons manufacturer, turned up dead shortly after testifying
in a military investigation. His head had been blown apart by a
blast from a machine gun. In 2009 former Chilean Army Gen. Guillermo
Letelier and Air Force Gen. Vicente Rodriguez were sentenced to
prison for shipping arms to Croatia at the time of its battle for
independence from Yugoslavia. 11 people were sentenced by a military
court in June, 2009, for their roles in the deal. In October, 2009,
retired Gen. Victor Lizarraga and retired Col. Manuel Provis got 10
and eight years, respectively, for conspiracy and homicide. Gen.
Carlos Krum and Col. Julio Munoz, also both retired, got nearly 2
years for conspiracy and murder, respectively. The identity of the
gunman in Huber's murder remained unknown.
(AP, 6/10/09)(AP, 10/5/09)
1993 Jun 29, In Budapest,
Hungary, the Szobor Park Museum held its grand opening. It was a
collection of Communist era sculpture about 20 minutes from
1993 Dec, Ameritech Corp. and
Deutsche Telekom AG teamed up to by a 30% stake in Matav Rt., the
state telephone system. By 1995 their stake was 67%. The government
permitted Matav to maintain a monopoly status for 8 years.
(WSJ, 6/25/96, p.A10)(WSJ, 8/27/97, p.A8)
1993 Voluntary pension funds
operated by private financial institutions became available.
(WSJ, 10/21/97, p.A18)
1993-1999 Attila Ambrus, Romanian-born hockey
player, robbed 29 banks in Hungary. In 2004 Julian Rubinstein
authored “Ballad of the Whiskey Robber: A True Story of Bank Heists,
Ice Hockey, Transylvanian Pelt Smuggling, Moonlighting Detectives
and Broken Hearts."
(SSFC, 10/3/04, p.M6)
1994 Mar 18, Zsa Zsa Gabor,
Hungarian-born actress, filed for bankruptcy.
1994 May 29, Hungary's
Socialist Party won parliamentary election. Socialist Prime Minister
Gyula Horn was elected to lead the Socialist-Free Democrat
coalition. The coalition slashed the communist welfare state and
solidified free-market democracy.
(SFC, 5/25/98, p.A10)(SC, 5/29/02)
1994 Jul 15, In Hungary Gyula
Horn, president of the Socialist Party, began serving as prime
1994 Dec 5, President Clinton,
on a whirlwind visit to the Conference on Security and Cooperation
in Budapest, Hungary, urged European leaders to "prevent future
Bosnias." In the so-called Budapest memorandum Britain, Russia and
the US affirmed their commitment to respect the independence,
sovereignty and existing borders of Ukraine.
(AP, 12/5/99)(AFP, 3/3/14)
1994 In Hungary paprika stocks
were adulterated with minium, a red oxide of lead, and many people
were stricken lead poisoning. Once lead enters the biosphere, it is
retained and recycled indefinitely. Lead atoms combine with
cysteine’s sulfur atoms and disrupt the disulfide bridges of
proteins. Thus many enzymes will malfunction.
(NH, 7/96, p.52,53)
1995 Budapest, the Independent
Smallholders is a right-wing opposition party led by Mr. Jozsef
Torgyan, and recent polls suggest that it is now Hungary's most
(WSJ, 11/8/95, p.A-14)
1996 Apr, Sony Corp. plans to
build a plant to produce audiovisual products by early next year in
the town of Godollo about 19 miles northeast of Budapest.
CD-players, stereo systems, VCR players and color TVs are planned
(WSJ, 4/5/96, p.B-3A)
1996 Jul 7, The average cost of
a Big Mac in Hungary was $1.43.
(SFC, 7/7/96, Parade, p.17)
1996 Sep 16, Romania and
Hungary signed a treaty over the status of 1.6 million Hungarians in
Romania and a guarantee of borders.
(SFE, 9/17/96, p.A12)
1997 May 15, In Hungary the
government approved the payment of $553.8 million to the Roman
Catholic Church for assets lost under Communist rule.
Negotiations on a concordat with the Vatican were in the final
stages. Physical assets would be gradually returned through 2011.
(WSJ, 5/16/97, p.A14)
1997 Jul 8, NATO issued formal
invitations to Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary.
(SFC, 7/9/97, p.A1)
1997 Jul, The parliament passed
legislation to privatize pensions starting Jan 1.
(WSJ, 10/21/97, p.A18)
1997 Oct 22, In Chechnya relief
workers Istvan Olah and Gabor Dunajsky of Hungary were captured and
held as hostages. They were released in July, 1998.
(SFC, 7/27/98, p.A10)
1997 In Hungary a Y2000 report
by the Parliamentary Commission said Roma children in this year
accounted for 67.9% of the students in "special" schools. Roma
children were commonly channeled into schools for the mentally
(SFC, 6/26/00, p.A10)
1998 Feb 11, In Hungary Janos
Fenyo (43) was gunned down while sitting in his car at a Budapest
traffic light. In 2019 a murder indictment was filed against Tamas
Gyarfas, the former head of Hungary's swimming federation, for
allegedly ordering the killing of Fenyo, a rival media mogul.
1998 Mar, In Hungary Viktor
Orban (34) founded Fidesz, a center-right opposition party.
(Econ, 4/10/10, p.54)
1998 May 10, Gyula Horn and the
ruling Socialists led in the first round of parliamentary elections.
(SFC, 5/11/98, p.A10)
1998 May 24, The Young
Democrats-Civic Party (Fidesz) led by Viktor Orban (34) won the
elections and opened the way for a center-right coalition to rule.
Fidesz won only 148 seats of the 386-member Parliament and planned
to form a coalition with The Hungarian Democratic Forum (17 seats)
and the Smallholders (48 seats). Orban was elected prime minister
and served to 2002.
(SFC, 5/25/98, p.A10)(SFC, 5/27/98, p.A12)(WSJ,
8/2100, p.B13F)(Econ, 4/10/10, p.54)
1998 Jun 24, The Young
Democrats Party and the Smallholders Party agreed to form the next
(SFC, 6/25/98, p.A12)
1998 Jul 2, A gangland car bomb
killed 4 and injured 25 people in Budapest. It was directed at
Jozsef Tamas Boros, a restaurateur who was cooperating with a police
investigation. A turf war between Russian, Ukrainian, Romania,
Turkish and Arab gangs had led to 140 bombings since 1991.
(SFC, 7/3/98, p.D2)
1998 The film "The Last Days"
was produced by Steven Spielberg. It was the stories of 5 Hungarian
Jews who survived the Holocaust.
(SFEC, 9/20/98, DB p.50)
1999 Feb 14, In Hungary the
death toll from the Feb 10 snow storm reached 19 and army
helicopters were used to drop food snow-bound villages.
(SFC, 2/15/99, p.A10)
1999 Mar 12, Poland, Hungary
and the Czech Republic formally joined NATO in a ceremony at
Independence, Mo., where Pres. Truman announced in 1949 the
formation of the Atlantic alliance for defense against the Soviet
(SFC, 3/11/99, p.C14)
1999 Mar, Hungary approved
unlimited use of its airspace and airfields for NATO operations but
ruled out direct involvement of its own military.
(SFC, 5/6/99, p.A13)
1999 Apr 11, Hungary turned
back a Russian aid convoy headed for Belgrade.
(SFC, 4/12/99, p.A12)
1999 Apr 12, In Hungary a
Russian aid convoy bound for Serbia was allowed to proceed.
(WSJ, 4/13/99, p.A1)
1999 Jun 23, In Hungary
torrential rains caused the evacuation of thousands and shut down
roads and railways across the country.
(SFEC, 7/4/99, p.T8)
2000 Jan 30, In Romania a dam
at the Baia Mare gold mine overflowed and caused cyanide to pout
into the Lapus River and then into the Somes River. It flowed into
Hungary and within weeks into the Tisa (Tisza) River in Yugoslavia.
(SFC, 2/12/00, p.A9)(SFC, 2/18/00, p.A1)
2000 Feb 21, It was reported
that the US FBI planned to open an office in Budapest in March at
the request of the Hungarian government in order to help break up
Russian gangs. The FBI would hire 10 Hungarian agents to work
alongside 5 US agents.
(SFC, 2/21/00, p.A12)
2000 Jun 6, Ferenc Madl (69),
law professor, was elected president by the Parliament. He replaced
(SFC, 6/7/00, p.B8)
2001 Mar 8, Flooding in the
Ukraine and northeastern Hungary left at least 5 people dead. Tens
of thousands were driven from their homes as the Tisza and other
Carpathian streams rose.
(WSJ, 3/9/01, p.A1)
2001 Mar 15, The Hungarian
Truth and Life Party (MIEP) held a rally in Budapest that drew as
many as 50,000. They included pensioners, urban students and
professionals mixed with dozens of skinheads.
(SFC, 5/5/01, p.D1)
2001 Jul 22, Miklos Meszoely,
author, died at age 80. His 1st book was published in 1948.
(SFC, 7/24/01, p.A20)
2001 Nov 23, The Council of
Europe ratified the Budapest Convention which allowed one country to
give chase, at least electronically, to criminals in another.
2001 The new Maria Valeria
Bridge over the Danube reunited Sturovo, Slovakia, with Esztergom,
Hungary. Germans blew up the old bridge in 1944.
(WSJ, 4/5/05, p.A15)
2001 In Budapest, Hungary, a
meeting on scientific publishing by the Open Society Institute
(later the Open Society Foundation) coined the phrase “open access"
as it sought to make scientific papers free to users. Open access
publishing had already begin in 2000 with launch in Britain of
BioMed Central and in America of the Public Library of Science
(Econ, 9/27/14, p.83)
2001 Gyorgy Gattyan, a
Hungarian entrepreneur, launched LiveJasmin, an Internet cam company
featuring live sex chats. The garage project later became Docler
Holding. In 2013 the company became headquartered in Luxembourg. By
2015 he was Hungary’s richest man and his porn site LiveJasmin
received 40m visitors a day.
p.64)(Econ, 9/26/15, p.62)
2002 Apr, PM Viktor Orban urged
Hungarians to look forward to EU membership in 2004, the
introduction of the euro in 2007 and the "Budapest Olympics" in
(WSJ, 4/3/02, p.A18)
2002 Apr 21, In Hungary the
Socialists and allies won elections over the governing center-right
coalition, the Fidesz-Hungarian Civic Party (188 seats), with 198 of
386 seats in parliament. Peter Medgyessey became prime minister.
(SFC, 4/22/02, p.A5)
2002 Jun 18, PM Peter
Medgyessey was accused of having secretly served in Hungary’s
Communist-era counter-espionage service.
(SFC, 6/19/02, p.A8)
2002 Jul 1, In southwestern
Hungary a bus carrying Polish pilgrims to a shrine in Bosnia struck
a stone barrier and overturned in a ditch killing 19.
2002 Sep, Hungary’s governing
coalition swept elections, winning the mayoral races in 17 of 23 big
cities, including Budapest, and a majority in 15 of 19 county
2002 Oct 9, The European
Union's executive Commission declared Bulgaria, the Czech Republic,
Cyprus, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania,
Slovenia, and Slovakia nearly ready for EU membership and
recommended they be invited to join in 2004. Romania and Bulgaria
likely will be delayed until 2007 because of weak economies, the
Commission said, adding Turkey was the weakest link among
2002 Oct 10, Imre Kertesz (72),
a Hungarian novelist and secular Jew, won the Nobel Prize for
literature. His books included "Fiasco" (1988) and "Kaddish for a
Child Not Born" (1990).
(SFC, 10/11/02, p.A2)(SFC, 12/5/02, p.E5)
2002 Nov 29, Romania urged the
EU on to reject a request by Hungarian producers for the exclusive
right to sell a regional brandy in EU countries under the generic
name "palinka." The Eastern European brandy, made from fermented
fruit pears, plums, apricots or grapes, has been produced in the
region under different names. In Hungary and in Romania's northwest
region of Transylvania, it is called "palinka," or "palinca," while
in southern Romania it is called "tuica," and in Moldova and
Bulgaria "rakiya." (AP, 11/30/02)
2002 Dec 13, The EU reached
agreement to accept 10 new countries in 2004. These included Czech
Republic, Cyprus, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta,
Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia.
(SFC, 12/14/02, p.A3)
2003 Apr 12, Some 83.8% of
voters in Hungary agreed to be part of the historic eastward
expansion of the European Union.
2003 May 8, In Hungary a
passenger train collided with a double-decker bus, slicing the bus
in two. At least 30 people were killed, all German tourists on the
2003 Sep, In Hungary Tibor
Rejto, CEO of K&H Bank, was arrested as part of an alleged
$40-50 million fraud scandal centered around stockbroker Attila
(Econ, 9/27/03, p.78)
2003 Nov, Hungary’s government
under PM Peter Medgyessy introduced a bonus monthly payment to all
retirees that became known as the “13th month."
(WSJ, 3/25/09, p.A10)(http://tinyurl.com/c4dxl4)
2003 In Hungary the Jobbik
Party was launched and grew to become the country's biggest
far-right political force.
2004 Feb, Tibor Draskovics was
appointed as Hungary‘s finance minister.
(WSJ, 8/24/04, p.A10)
2004 Apr 13, Hungarian
authorities said they arrested three Arabs who were plotting to
assassinate visiting Israeli President Moshe Katsav.
2004 Apr 15, In Hungary
government leaders and the Israeli president inaugurated this
country's first Holocaust museum in memory of Hungary's 600,000
2004 Apr 27, Russian Foreign
Minister Sergey Lavrov and EU officials signed an accord extending
the EU-Russia partnership accord to Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania,
Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Cyprus and
Malta, which join May 1.
2004 May 1, Revelers across
ex-communist eastern Europe celebrated their historic entry to the
European Union. 10 new members (Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia,
Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia)
joined. Malta joined with 70 exemptions to EU rules. Poland had 43
exemptions. Latvia had 32. The Turkish occupied area of Cyprus was
suspended from entry.
(AP, 5/1/04)(Econ, 2/28/04, p.50)(Econ, 4/16/05,
2004 Aug 19, In Hungary the
Socialist Party effectively ousted Prime Minister Peter Medgyessy
from office and said it would nominate his replacement next week.
2004 Aug 25, Hungary chose
Ferenc Gyurcsany (43), one of the nation’s richest businessmen, as
the new premier. He made his fortune from privatization deals in the
(WSJ, 8/26/04, p.A1)(Econ, 8/28/04, p.48)
2004 Aug 28, In Hungary
hundreds of thousands of young people thronged the streets of
Budapest to the sounds of techno music for the city's fifth annual
electronic music parade.
2004 Aug, Sandor Demjan and
Andrew Vajna planned to construct the world’s largest movie studio
in Etyek, Hungary.
(WSJ, 8/26/04, p.A1)
2004 Nov 3, Hungary said it
will withdraw its 300 non-combat troops from Iraq by March 31.
2004 Dec 5, Hungarians voted in
a referendum on extending citizenship to millions of ethnic
Hungarians living in the region.
2004 Hungary passed legislation
to fully open the state security archives. It allowed names to be
kept secret to protect modern day national security.
(Econ, 5/31/08, SR p.13)
2004 In Hungary Ramil Safarov
of Azerbaijan killed fellow-student Gurgen Margarjan of Armenia
while both men studied at a NATO English language course for
military officers of non-member countries. Safarov was sentenced to
life in prison, but was released to Azerbaijan on Aug 31, 2012.
(Economist, 9/8/12, p.51)
2005 Jan 1, Hungary was
forecast for 4% annual GDP growth with a population at 10 million
and GDP per head at $11,210.
(Econ, 1/8/05, p.88)
2005 Feb 11, A political
consulting firm posted the names of 19 agents and informants of
Hungary's communist secret police on a Web site, and it threatened
to list more.
2005 Apr 8, Kalman Ferenczfalvi
(84), credited with saving the lives of some 2,000 Jews during the
Holocaust, died in Hungary.
2005 Jun 7, In Hungary
legislators narrowly elected Laszlo Solyom (63), a center-right
opposition candidate as the new president, in a setback for the
2005 Oct 21, Hungary’s health
minister told a local news agency that the country has developed a
bird-flu vaccine from humans.
(WSJ, 10/22/05, p.A1)
2005 Hungary’s debt stood at
almost 60% of GDP.
(Econ, 8/5/06, p.63)
2006 Jan 19, In northeastern
Hungary a Slovak military plane crashed as it ferried troops back
from Kosovo, killing at least 42 people. Only one person survived
the crash of the AN-24 aircraft.
2006 Feb 21, Tests confirmed
H5N1 in three birds found dead in Hungary, making the country the
seventh EU nation with an outbreak of the deadly strain of bird flu.
2006 Mar 14, Hungary’s PM
Ferenc Gyurcsany said Hungarian researchers have devised a vaccine
for humans against the current form of the H5N1 bird flu virus. “If
the virus were to mutate, we would not have to experiment with new
technology but would be able to manufacture a real vaccine within
2006 Apr 9, Hungary's ruling
Socialists appeared to hold a narrow lead in the first round of
2006 Apr 23, In Hungary
Socialist PM Ferenc Gyurcsany's coalition won the runoff
parliamentary ballots, becoming Hungary's first administration to
win re-election since communism fell.
2006 May 13, PM Ferenc
Gyurcsany announced a plan to stabilize Hungary's economy involving
massive public sector layoffs, in an effort to get the country into
the eurozone by 2010.
2006 May 13, In southern
Hungary a model airplane crashed into a crowd at an air show killing
2006 Jun 12, Hungary’s director
of national epidemic affairs some 1,200 people the northeast had
fallen ill from drinking contaminated water. Flooding caused by
heavy spring rainfall contaminated the spring water that flows into
the city water system.
2006 Jun 12, Gyorgy Ligeti
(b.1923), Hungarian composer, died in Vienna, Austria. Stanley
Kubrick used his scores in the 1968 film “2001: A Space Odyssey."
Ligeti’s opera “Le Grand Macabre," based on a play by Belgian
surrealist Michel Ghelderode, premiered in Stockholm in 1978.
(SFC, 6/12/06, p.B7)
2006 Jun 22, Hungarian PM
Ferenc Gyurcsany said he and Pres. Bush had discussed calls to relax
US rules which exclude citizens of nine of the bloc's 10 new member
states, including Hungary, from visa waivers enjoyed by most of its
other 15 member states. President Bush said war-weary Iraqis could
learn from the Hungarians' long and bloody struggle against tyranny.
(Reuters, 6/22/06)(AP, 6/22/07)
2006 Jul 8, In Hungary several
thousand labor union members demonstrated in Budapest against a
government austerity package they say requires a disproportionate
sacrifice from workers.
2006 Jul 24, Hungary’s central
bank raised its core interest rate half a percentage point to 6.75%
in an aggressive move to stabilize its currency. This followed a
quarter point raise in June. Inflation stood at 2.8%.
(WSJ, 7/25/06, p.A8)(Econ, 8/5/06, p.64)
2006 Sep 1, Hungarian poet
Gyorgy Faludy (95), a legend of resistance to the rise of Nazism and
Communism, died at his home in Budapest. He spent 1950-1953 in the
Stalinist concentration camp at Recsk. Faludy won international fame
with his autobiographical novel "My Happy Days in Hell" in the
1960s, which related his escape from fascist Hungary and his return,
and imprisonment, in a country under communist rule.
(Reuters, 9/2/06)(Econ, 9/16/06, p.96)
2006 Sep 19, Some 2,000-3,000
protesters stormed the headquarters of Hungarian state television
and forced it off the air briefly in an explosion of anger. The
protests began after a recording of PM Gyurcsany's comments made in
May was leaked to Hungarian media. In his speech to a meeting of
Socialist deputies, the prime minister admitted that the government
had lied about the state of the economy in order to ensure victory
in the elections.
2006 Sep 20, Hungarian PM
Ferenc Gyurcsany vowed to crack down on rioters. Police blaming the
violence on football hooligans and extreme right-wing groups.
Thousands of protesters demonstrated for a 4th day demanding that PM
(AFP, 9/20/06)(SFC, 9/21/06, p.A3)
2006 Sep 23, A square in front
of Hungary's parliament overflowed with demonstrators demanding that
PM Gyurcsany quit in the largest protest yet since a recording was
leaked on which he admitted lying to the people about the economy.
Hungary’s current-account deficit reached 9% of GDP and the budget
deficit hit 10%.
(AP, 9/24/06)(Econ, 9/23/06, p.64)
2006 Oct 6, Hungarian PM Ferenc
Gyurcsany convincingly won a confidence motion in parliament but a
crowd of over 50,000 opposition supporters gathered in front of the
building to demand he quit.
2006 Oct 8, In Hungary tens of
thousands of anti-government protesters called for the ouster of the
Socialist PM Ferenc Gyurcsany because of his admission on a leaked
tape that he had lied to the country about the economy. A new leaked
recording of a Socialist minister was broadcast, raising more
questions about the government's integrity.
2006 Oct 23, In Hungary riots
left 167 injured, including 17 police officers, while 131 were
detained. The anti-government demonstrations coincided with
Hungary's commemoration of the 50th anniversary of its uprising
against Soviet rule. The next day Viktor Orban, Hungarian
conservative opposition leader, came under withering attack for his
role in fueling the far-right protests in Budapest.
(AFP, 10/24/06)(AP, 10/23/07)
2007 Mar 15, In Hungary
thousands of people protested against Socialist PM Ferenc Gyurcsany
at ceremonies to mark the country's national holiday, demanding his
resignation and shouting "traitor."
2007 May 2, The grave of
Hungary's last communist ruler, Janos Kadar (1956-1988), was pried
open and his remains and his wife's urn were thought to have been
2007 May 20, Hungary’s PM
Ferenc Gyurcsany said that the justice minister resigned and the
national and Budapest police chiefs were dismissed in an effort to
restore public confidence in the force after cases accusing officers
of rape, corruption and theft.
(AP, 5/21/07)(Econ, 6/2/07, p.51)
2007 Jul 19, In southern
Hungary a tourist bus collided with a truck. The truck driver and
six bus passengers were killed, and 16 others were injured.
2007 Sep 24, Hungarian
officials said that in an effort to bring prostitutes into the legal
economy, they will allow sex workers to apply for an entrepreneur's
permit, a move that could generate government revenues from an
industry worth an estimated $1 billion annually.
2007 Oct 5, Nearly 300
participants started twisting and turning a small multicolored cube
on the first day of the Rubik's Cube World Championships in
Budapest, the birthplace of the cult puzzle.
2007 Oct 7, In Budapest,
Hungary, Yu Nakajima of Japan (16) took the top prize at the Rubik's
Cube World Championships, solving the cube 5 times in an average of
2007 Nov 21, In Hungary several
trade unions and civic groups held a series of strikes and protests
against the Socialist-led government's plans to privatize health
insurance and close some railway lines.
2007 Nov 28, Two Hungarians and
a Ukrainian were arrested in eastern Slovakia and Hungary in an
attempted sale of a kilo (2.2 lbs) of uranium, material believed to
be from the former Soviet Union. Police said it was enriched enough
to be used in a radiological "dirty bomb."
2007 Dec 20, Estonia, Hungary,
Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovenia, Slovakia and the Czech
Republic halted land and sea border controls at midnight in a wave
of new members of Europe's passport-free Schengen zone. They all
joined the EU on May 1, 2004.
(AFP, 12/20/07)(WSJ, 12/21/07, p.A1)
2007 Janos Kornai (b.1928),
Hungarian economist, authored “By Force of Thought: Irregular
Memoirs of an Intellectual Journey."
(WSJ, 1/30/07, p.B15)
2008 Feb 26, Hungary’s central
bank adopted a new currency regime allowing its currency to float
rather than trade in a band against the euro, which began in 2001.
Adoption of the euro was predicted to take place in 2014 at the
(WSJ, 2/26/08, p.A5)
2008 Mar 17, The US
administration signed deals with Hungary, Lithuania and Slovakia
paving the way for visa-free travel for their citizens despite
concerns in Brussels over the bilateral agreements.
2008 Mar 9, In Hungary 80% of
voters in a referendum rejected small charges for doctor visits, and
hospital stays as well as tuition fees for higher education.
(Econ, 3/29/08, p.67)
2008 Apr 1, Hungary’s coalition
partner pulled out of the government leaving the Socialists without
a parliamentary majority.
(WSJ, 4/2/08, p.A1)
2008 Apr, Exxon Mobil bought
into a venture seeking to extract natural gas from a huge reservoir
in the Mako Trough of Hungary.
(WSJ, 6/26/08, p.B1)
2008 Oct 9, Trading in
Hungary’s bond market broke down as buyers practically disappeared
for a 10-year auction. The government raised less than planned. A
day earlier it left its key lending rate at 8.5%.
(WSJ, 10/10/08, p.A4)
2008 Oct 16, The European
Central Bank extended emergency loans to Hungary’s central bank. The
ECB said it will lend up to $6.75 billion.
(SFC, 10/17/08, p.A5)
2008 Oct 22, The DJIA tumbled
514.45 to close at 8519.21, its 7th biggest point drop in history,
as investors believed that the global economy is heading into a deep
recession. Hungary’s central bank raised interest rates by 3 points,
from 8.5% to 11.5%, to prevent a run on its currency. Argentine and
Brazilian stock markets each fell about 10%. Former Fed Chief Alan
Greenspan said he was wrong to think that financial markets could
(WSJ, 10/22/08, p.A1)(SFC, 10/24/08, p.C1)(Econ,
2008 Oct 26, Hungary reached
agreement with the IMF and the EU on a broad economic rescue
package, including substantial financing, steadying its battered
currency. The deal was expected to be finalized over the next few
2008 Oct 29, Officials said
that EU governments promised to lend Hungary 6.5 billion euros ($8.1
billion) as part of a 20 billion euro ($25 billion) international
rescue package to help it weather a financial crisis that has
sharply devalued its currency.
2008 Nov 6, Authorities said
Hungary is preparing a financial aid package worth up to 600 billion
forints ($3 billion, 2.3 billion euros) to boost domestic banks'
capital and help them refinance debts.
2008 Nov 24, The National Bank
of Hungary cut its key interest rate by half a percentage point to
an annual rate of 11% to support the economy amid the global
2008 Dec 8, The National Bank
of Hungary cut its key interest rate by half a percentage point to
an annual rate of 10.5% due to the deteriorating economy outlook.
(WSJ, 12/9/08, p.C2)
2008 Dec 15, Hungary's
Constitutional Court annulled a law giving rights to domestic
partners because it would diminish the importance of marriage.
2008-2009 In Hungary six Roma, including a
5-year-old boy, were killed in a series of attacks. In 2015 an
appeals court agreed with the life sentences without the possibility
for parole given to Zsolt Peto and brothers Arpad and Istvan Kiss.
It also confirmed the 13-year prison sentence for Istvan Csontos,
the driver in some of the attacks.
2009 Jan 3, Russian gas flows
to four European Union countries fell normal levels after Moscow cut
off supplies to Ukraine in a pricing row with no talks in sight to
resolve the dispute. Bulgaria's Bulgargaz joined energy firms in
Poland, Romania and Hungary in saying they had noted falls in
2009 Jan 7, In Hungary a masked
gunman shot to death Jozsef Takacs (62), a school principal, and
Laszlo Papp (32), a teacher, at a school in the Budapest
neighborhood of Csepel. 2 suspects were arrested the next day.
Police said a security guard shot the two men, hours after he and an
accomplice, a 36-year-old former administrator at the school, were
fired by the principal on suspicion of embezzling up to 4 million
forints ($20,000, euro14,600).
(AP, 1/7/09)(AP, 1/8/09)
2009 Feb 27, Leading
international financial institutions said Eastern Europe's
struggling banks will receive euro24.5 billion ($31.1 billion) worth
of emergency help to shore up their battered finances. Regional
leaders were scheduled to meet this weekend. The Hungarian, Polish
and Czech currencies strengthened on the news of the aid package.
2009 Mar 1, Germany rejected
appeals for a single multibillion euro (dollar) bailout of eastern
Europe, even after Hungry begged EU leaders not to let a new "Iron
Curtain" divide the continent into rich and poor.
2009 Mar 15, In Hungary several
thousand people held right wing, anti-government protests in
Budapest during a national holiday. Police detained 35 people. The
holiday commemorated the unsuccessful 1848 revolution against the
2009 Mar 21, Hungary’s PM
Ferenc Gyurcsany offered his resignation to allow the formation of a
new government, citing a loss of popularity and worsening economic
crisis. The former communist youth leader was quickly re-elected as
(AFP, 3/21/09)(Econ, 3/28/09, p.63)
2009 Mar 24, In Hungary former
bank governor Gyorgy Suranyi emerged as the preferred candidate to
replace PM Gyurcsany.
(WSJ, 3/25/09, p.A1)
2009 Mar 30, Hungary’s ruling
Socialist Party nominated economy minister Gordon Bajnai (b.1968) to
become the country’s next prime minister.
(WSJ, 3/31/09, p.A14)
2009 Apr 14, In Hungary Gordon
Bajnai (b.1968) began serving as the country’s 7th prime minister.
He continued to May 29, 2010.
2009 Jun 8, Final election
results showed a British far-right party won its first-ever
parliamentary seats in EU elections. The British National Party,
which does not accept nonwhite members and calls for the "voluntary
repatriation" of immigrants, won two of Britain's 72 seats in the
European Parliament. Austria's Freedom Party, which also campaigned
on an anti-Islam platform, more than doubled its share of the vote
to 13.1%. Hungary's Jobbik party, which describes itself as
Euro-skeptic and anti-immigration and wants police to crack down on
what it calls "Gypsy crime," won three of the country's 22 seats and
almost 15% of the vote. The Greater Romania Party, which is, among
other things, pro-religion, anti-gay and anti-Hungarian, made
surprise gains, winning almost 9% of the vote and taking two of
Romania's 33 seats. A bloc of center-right parties remained the
(AP, 6/8/09)(Econ, 11/14/09, p.63)
2009 Jul 13, Turkey and four EU
countries (Austria, Bulgaria, Romania and Hungary) formally agreed
to route the Nabucco natural gas pipeline across their territories,
pushing ahead with a US- and EU-backed attempt to make Europe less
dependent on Russian gas.
(AP, 7/13/09)(Econ, 7/18/09, p.47)
2009 Aug 21, Slovakia stopped
Hungary’s Pres. Laszlo Solyom from crossing its border. This was a
breach of EU rules on freedom of movement. Solyom had planned
to unveil a statue of St. Stephen, the first king of Hungary, in the
predominantly Hungarian city of Komarno. Slovakia’s government had
objected to the visit as the date coincided with the “Prague Spring"
of 1968, when Hungary, as part of the Warsaw pact, took part in the
Soviet crush of Czechoslovakia’s independence movement.
(Econ, 8/29/09, p.46)
2009 Sep 1, In Slovakia a new
language law was scheduled to come into force to promote the use of
Slovak in public. Hungarian speakers, who numbered about a fifth of
the population, viewed this as a direct attack on their right to
speak their mother-tongue.
(Econ, 8/1/09, p.47)
2009 Sep 16, Hungary said it
will accept a detainee from Guantanamo Bay, inching President Barack
Obama closer to his pledge to close the U.S. military detention
2009 Oct 9, In Hungary
contestants showed off breast implants, nose jobs and face lifts as
Miss Plastic Hungary 2009 strove to promote the benefits of plastic
2009 Oct 29, In Hungary Laszlo
Majtenyi, the chairman of Hungary's national body in charge of
awarding frequencies (ORTT), announced his resignation after ORTT
took away 2 nationwide licenses from foreign-owned stations and gave
them to 2 local firms, one with links to Fidesz, the right-wing
2009 Nov 14, In Moscow Magnus
Carlsen (18) of Norway became the new No. 1 chess player in the
world with a tournament victory over Peter Leko of Hungary.
(SSFC, 11/15/09, p.A6)
2009 Nov 26, In southern
Hungary a student (23) opened fire at a university in the city of
Pecs, killing one student and wounding three other people.
2010 Jan 25, The National Bank
of Hungary cut its main interest rate by a quarter percentage point
to 6 percent, its lowest since September 2005.
2010 Feb, Hungarian lawmakers
made it a crime punishable by up to three years in prison to
publicly deny, call into question or minimize the Holocaust. In
June, the law was amended to refer instead to crimes against
humanity committed by the Nazi and communist regimes.
2010 Mar 10, Hungarian
President Laszlo Solyom signed a law making Holocaust denial
punishable by three years in prison.
2010 Apr 11, Hungarians voted
in a general election that looked likely to bring the right-wing
Fidesz party back to power, while giving the far-right Jobbik its
first ticket into parliament. The National Election Office said the
party led by former PM Viktor Orban got 52.8 percent of the votes in
the first round, followed by the governing Socialist Party with 19.3
percent. Jobbik, a far-right party with anti-Gypsy and extreme
nationalist agenda got 16.7 percent, over three times as much as any
other far-right party since the country's return to democracy from
communism in 1990.
(AFP, 4/11/10)(AP, 4/11/10)
2010 Apr 25, Hungarians went to
the polls for the 2nd round of general elections. The center-right
Fidesz party, led by Viktor Orban, a former prime minister who
promised to restore "law and order" and pull Hungary out of
recession, won a two-thirds parliamentary majority taking 263 of 386
seats. The ruling Socialists won just 59 seats and the far-right
Jobbik party won 47.
(AFP, 4/25/10)(AP, 4/25/10)(Econ, 5/1/10, p.52)
2010 Apr 26, Hungary's central
bank cut its main interest rate by a quarter point to a new all-time
low of 5.25 percent, continuing its run of monetary easing as
inflation appears under control and financial investors more
confident in the country's stability.
2010 May 8, In Hungary Andor
Lilienthal (99), the last surviving member of 27 original
grandmaster chess players, died in Budapest.
2010 May 14, In Hungary Gabor
Vona, the leader of Hungary's nationalist Jobbik party, wore a
banned black vest while taking his oath of office. The Hungarian
Guard was disbanded last year and its black outfits banned, although
the group has continued its activities.
2010 May 18, In southern Poland
2 days of flooding killed at least five people. Officials closed the
Auschwitz-Birkenau memorial site to protect its Holocaust archives
and artifacts. Heavy rains that began in central Europe last weekend
also caused flooding in areas of Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech
Republic, with rivers bursting their banks and inundating low-lying
homes and roads, and cutting off villages.
2010 May 26, Hungary‘s new
government gave ethnic Magyars abroad the right to Hungarian
(Econ, 6/5/10, p.60)(http://tinyurl.com/2amef5g)
2010 May 31, Hungary‘s new
government passed a bill submitted by the new center-right
government to introduce a National Unity Day on June 4.
(Econ, 6/5/10, p.60)(http://tinyurl.com/2btntca)
2010 Jun 5, Hungary's
government said it aimed to meet this year's budget deficit target,
seeking to draw a line under "exaggerated" talk of a possible
Greek-style debt crisis that unnerved global markets a day earlier.
2010 Jun 8, Hungary's new PM
Victor Orban said he would cut public wages, overhaul the tax system
and ban mortgage lending in foreign currencies as he strove to
reassure nervous investors he can contain the budget deficit. Orban
said he would introduce a flat 16 percent income tax.
2010 Jul 7, In Philadelphia,
Pa., a 250-foot barge collided on the Delaware River with a stalled
amphibious sightseeing boat. 2 visitors from Hungary were killed. In
2011 tug pilot Matt Devlin agreed to plead guilty to involuntary
manslaughter following evidence that he was talking on a cell phone
during the accident.
(AP, 7/9/10)(SFC, 7/15/11, p.A7)
2010 Sep 18, In Hungary
Hacktivity 2010, the largest computer hackers' conference in eastern
Europe, kicked off, with some 1,000 participants expected to attend
the two-day event.
2010 Oct 4, In Hungary a
torrent of toxic red sludge from an alumina plant tore through
Kolontar and two other villages. The next day Hungary declared a
state of emergency in three counties. After some days 9 people were
reported killed and some 150 injured.
(Reuters, 10/5/10)(AFP, 10/8/10)(AP,
10/11/10)(Econ, 10/16/10, p.63)
2010 Oct 6, Hungary scrambled
to contain a toxic mud spill that left four people dead and more
than 100 injured in what is being described as an ecological
catastrophe. The spill raised fears that pollution leeching from it
could reach the Danube River, which courses through Croatia, Serbia,
Bulgaria, Romania and Ukraine before flowing into the Black Sea.
2010 Oct 7, Hungary's most
prestigious organization of scientists and researchers said tests of
the red sludge flowing into the Danube show no dangerous heavy metal
levels. Disaster relief officials said more than 150 people, most of
them suffering chemical burns, were treated in hospitals after part
of the MAL Zrt company metals factory reservoir collapsed and a
toxic torrent swept through three villages killing 8 people.
(AP, 10/7/10)(AP, 10/8/10)(AP, 10/11/10)
2010 Oct 9, Hungarian police
and soldiers evacuated 800 from the village of Kolontar as
authorities said a second flood of toxic sludge from a chemicals
plant was likely after new cracks appeared in a dyke.
2010 Oct 10, A Hungarian
official said the wall of a reservoir filled with caustic red sludge
will inevitably collapse and unleash a new deluge of red sludge that
could flow about a half-mile (1 km) to the north.
2010 Oct 11, Hungary took over
control of the Hungarian Aluminum Production and Trade Company
(MAL). PM Orban said that Zoltan Bakonyi, the managing director of
MAL, has been arrested. Bakonyi’s father, Arpad Bakonyi, had played
a central role in the privatization of the country’s aluminum
industry and remained its largest shareholder.
(SFC, 10/12/10, p.A3)
2010 Oct 13, Hungarian
authorities said the threat of another chemical spill had been
averted and villagers could return home, as the plant responsible
prepared to resume production. The municipal court in Veszprem
released MAL's managing director Zoltan Bakonyi, who had been
brought in for questioning.
(AFP, 10/13/10)(AP, 10/13/10)
2010 Dec 21, Hungary’s Fidesz
party passed the second part of contentious legislation placing
broadcast, print and online media under the supervision of a new
authority with power to impose large fines for ill-defined offenses.
(Econ, 1/8/11, p.53)
2010 Dec 23, Hungary’s
lawmakers approved new budget plans and pledged to get the budget
deficit below 3 percent of national income next year. Fitch Ratings
said the measures proposed, particularly on pensions, could actually
worsen the public finances in coming years.
2011 Jan 1, In Hungary a new
media law went into effect the same day Hungary took over the
rotating EU presidency from Belgium. The law greatly expanded the
state's power to monitor and penalize private news outlets,
including on the Internet. Publications deemed to be unbalanced or
offensive in their coverage could face large fines.
2011 Jan 15, In Hungary three
young women died in a stampede at the West-Balkan nightclub in
downtown Budapest. Thousands of people were caught up in the
stampede and the victims may have been trampled by the rushing
2011 Jan 27, In Hungary Bela
Biszku (89), a former Hungarian interior minister, was charged with
publicly downplaying the regime's crimes. He was seen as one of the
main architects of repression after the country's 1956
anti-communist uprising. Biszku was charged because of comments he
made during an appearance on state television on Aug. 4, 2010 in
which he said he had nothing to apologize for.
2011 Apr 18, Hungary's
center-right-dominated parliament adopted a socially and fiscally
conservative new constitution, with 262 votes in favor, 44 against
and one member abstaining. It included a ban on gay marriage
protection of the life of a fetus from conception.
(AFP, 4/18/11)(SFC, 4/19/11, p.A2)
2011 Apr 22, The Hungarian Red
Cross evacuated hundreds of Roma women and children from their homes
because they were frightened of a far-right vigilante group that was
setting up a training camp near their village.
2011 Apr 25, Hungarian
President Pal Schmitt formally signed the country's new constitution
into law, despite heavy criticism from civil groups, rights
organizations and opposition parties.
2011 Jun 18, In Bulgaria nearly
1,000 marchers joined the fourth gay pride rally in Sofia. Gay pride
rallies were also held in Croatia and Hungary. Hundreds of police
were on duty to protect the marchers following calls by extremist
groups to stop the demonstrations.
2011 Jun 24, Chinese Premier
Wen Jiabao embarked on a three-country tour of Europe, mired in
currency and sovereign debt woes. After talks with Hungary’s PM
Viktor Orban and a reception at a Budapest university, Wen moves on
to London and Berlin before returning home.
2011 Jun 25, China’s PM Wen
Jiabao, during a visit to Budapest, announced Beijing would purchase
Hungarian government bonds and extend a one-billion-euro credit to
2011 Sep, Hungary Fidesz
government under PM Viktor Orban passed legislation allowing
Hungarians to repay the entirety of their mortgages at a fixed rate
of 180 forints ($.85) to the franc. Banks were forced to swallow the
(Econ, 10/1/11, p.55)
2011 Nov 6, In Egypt 11
Hungarian tourists were killed and 27 injured when their bus
overturned in the Red Sea resort of Hurghada.
2011 Nov 17, The UN nuclear
agency said a Hungarian manufacturer of medical radioactive
substances was "most probably" the source of increased radiation
levels measured in several European countries in the past weeks.
2011 Dec 15, The director of
Hungary's state news service was fired and the editor-in-chief
reassigned due to the censorship of images in a newscast of a former
head of Hungary's Supreme Court. On Dec 10 three television
employees began holding a hunger strike seeking the dismissal of
managers they say are responsible for censorship and restricting
news coverage in state-owned media.
2011 Dec 23, Hungary’s police
detained former PM Ferenc Gyurcsany and several other opposition
politicians who were protesting against the government outside
Parliament. Government lawmakers were in the process of approving
several contentious laws, including a new central bank law that has
drawn criticism from the European Union.
2011 Dec 27, Hungarian media
officials say two employees, who have been on hunger strike for over
two weeks in protest at alleged political meddling with journalists'
work in state-funded media, have been fired. The state Media Service
Support and Asset Management Fund (MTVA, said that Balazs Nagy
Navarro and Aranka Szavuly were dismissed because their fast — in
which they have only been ingesting liquids since Dec. 10 — is
illegal and a "provocation" of their employer.
2011 Hungary under PM Viktor
Orban introduced one of the world’s broadest levies on unhealthy
foods. The “chips tax" applied to sugar, salt, fat, booze and energy
(Econ 6/10/17, p.52)
2012 Jan 6, Fitch Ratings
downgraded Hungary's credit grade to junk status, citing a standoff
between the country and the EU and the IMF over rescue loans.
2012 Jan 17, The European Union
and Hungary brought their fight over democratic rights fully into
the open, with the EU Commission launching legal challenges against
the former Soviet-bloc country many fear may be slipping back into
2012 Jan 18, PM Viktor Orban
said that Hungary's new constitution is based on the core principles
of the EU but acknowledged questions over the independence of the
central bank and the judiciary are understandable.
2012 Feb, Malev, Hungary’s flag
air carrier, went bankrupt.
(Econ, 5/19/12, p.73)
2012 Mar 28, Hungary’s Pres.
Pal Schmitt refused to resign a day after his alma mater confirmed
media reports that he copied most of his doctoral thesis form other
works 20 years earlier and failed to give credit to them.
(SFC, 3/29/12, p.A2)
2012 Apr 2, Hungarian President
Pal Schmitt (69) resigned because of a plagiarism scandal regarding
a doctoral dissertation he had written 20 years ago.
2012 Apr 24, The UN released a
report slamming Hungary for the treatment of migrants from
violence-ridden countries detained for months without convictions.
(SFC, 4/25/12, p.A2)
2013 Apr 30, Hungary approved a
new measure which in effect nationalized the sale of tobacco. It cut
the number of licensed outlets from 44,000 to 5,400, effective on
(Econ, 5/11/13, p.47)(http://tinyurl.com/q3gnad5)
2012 May 2, The Hungarian
parliament chose Janos Ader (52), a close ally of PM Viktor Orban,
to be country's new president, guaranteeing that his conservative
Fidesz party will be able to pass laws at will without interference.
The Hungarian Socialist Party, the largest opposition formation in
parliament, boycotted the presidential election.
2012 Jul 15, The Nazi-hunting
Simon Wiesenthal Center confirmed that Laszlo Csatary (97), accused
of complicity in the killings of 15,700 Jews, had been tracked down
to the Hungarian capital. He served during World War II as a senior
Hungarian police officer in the Slovakian city of Kosice, then under
Hungarian rule. Csatary was taken into custody on July 18 and
charged with war crimes.
(AFP, 7/16/12)(AP, 7/18/12)
2012 Aug 31, Armenia broke off
diplomatic ties with Hungary after an Azerbaijani military officer
sentenced to life in prison here for killing an Armenian officer was
sent back to his homeland and, despite assurances, immediately
pardoned and freed. Lt. Ramil Safarov (35) was given a life sentence
in 2006 by the Budapest City Court after he confessed to killing Lt.
Gurgen Markarian of Armenia while both were in Hungary for a 2004
NATO language course.
2012 Oct 1, The Hungarian
Parliament filed a bill to ban most slot machines, allowing them in
only three casinos. Last year a monthly tax on the machines was
increased fivefold from $450 to $2250.
(SFC, 10/2/12, p.A2)
2012 Dec 2, In Hungary
thousands of people attended an anti-Nazi rally in Budapest to
protest a call by far-right lawmaker Marton Gyongyosi to screen Jews
for national security risks.
(SFC, 12/3/12, p.A2)
2013 Jan 5, In Hungary
journalist Zsolt Bayer, a founding member of the governing Fidesz
party, wrote a newspaper column in which he said: "a significant
part of the Roma are unfit for coexistence. They are not fit to live
among people. These Roma are animals and they behave like animals."
2013 Feb 26, Hungary’s National
Food Chain Safety Office (Nebih) horse meat labeled as beef has been
sold in the country.
2013 Mar 11, Hungary’s
parliament voted to amend the constitution, despite pleas from the
European Commission that the amendments conflict with EU law.
(Econ, 3/16/13, p.53)
2013 Mar 15, A snowstorm in
Hungary brought drifts 10 feet (3m) high and violent gusts of wind,
forcing thousands of people to spend the night in their cars or
emergency shelters after being stranded on a major highway.
2013 Mar 19, Hungary's Minister
of Human Resources asked journalist Ferenc Szaniszlo to return
a state award he received onmarch 16 after Israel and the United
States complained about disparaging remarks Szaniszlo had made
earlier about Gypsies and Jews.
2013 Apr 28, Janos Starker,
world-renowned cellist, died in Indiana. Starker, born in Hungary in
1924, had arrived in the in the US in 1948.
(SFC, 5/7/13, p.C3)
2013 Jun 9, At least 21
flood-related deaths have been reported in central Europe. A week of
heavy rains and flooding caused extensive damage in central and
southern Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria, Slovakia and Hungary.
2013 Jun 18, Hungarian
prosecutors indicted Laszlo Csatary (98), a former police officer,
for abusing Jews and assisting in their deportation to Nazi death
camps during World War II. They said Csatary was the chief of an
internment camp for 12,000 Jews at a brick factory in Kosice — a
Slovak city then part of Hungary — in May 1944, and that he beat
them with his bare hands and a dog whip.
2013 Jun 19, In Hungary former
PM Gyula Horn (b.1932) died. He had served as prime minister from
2013 Jul 10, In Hungary a
government minister said wages for 150,000 teachers will rise from
September by an average 34%. Further hikes were promised every year
2013 Aug 6, A Hungarian court
jailed four neo-Nazis for killing Roma families in a spree of racist
violence in 2008 and 2009 that shocked the country and led to
accusations that police had failed to protect an historically
2013 Aug 10, In Hungary Laszlo
Csatary (98), a former police officer indicted in June by Hungarian
authorities for abusing Jews and contributing to their deportation
to Nazi death camps during World War II, died.
2013 Oct 27, In Romania
thousands of ethnic Hungarians held rallies in 14 communities of
Transylvania to demand autonomy in the areas where they live.
2014 Jan 26, Randolph L. Braham
(91), a Romanian-born American professor and prominent Holocaust
survivor and scholar, said he was handing back a 2011 Hungarian
state award in protest at the government's "falsification of
2014 Jan 27, Hungary’s Pres.
Janos Ader, on Holocaust Memorial Day, clearly stated that Hungarian
officials had collaborated with the Nazis during WWII.
(Econ, 2/1/14, p.44)
2014 Feb 6, Hungary's
parliament authorized a deal with Russia to build two reactors at
the country's only nuclear power plant in Paks.
2014 Mar, Hungary signed a €10
billion loan agreement with Russia to expand and modernize Paks, a
nuclear power station.
(Econ, 7/19/14, p.48)
2014 Apr 6, Hungary held
elections. PM Viktor Orban's Fidesz party won the parliamentary
elections by a wide margin, with a left-wing coalition and the
far-right Jobbik party in second place. An official projection gave
Orban's Fidesz party 133 of 199 parliament seats, guaranteeing it
will form the next government.
(AP, 4/6/14)(Reuters, 4/7/14)(SSFC, 5/11/14,
2014 Apr 30, The Council of
Europe said Hungary's prison system needs to reduce overcrowding,
stop discrimination against Roma prisoners and offer inmates work or
recreational activities so they don't spend 23 hours a day in their
2014 May 10, Hungarian
lawmakers elected Viktor Orban to his 3rd term as prime minister.
(SSFC, 5/11/14, p.A6)
2014 May 13, In Hungary a
Budapest court found Bela Biszku (92), a former senior official in
the Hungarian Communist Party, guilty of war crimes during the
suppression of the 1956 anti-Soviet uprising. He was sentenced to 5
years and six months imprisonment.
2014 May 27, In Hungary Gergo
Saling, an editor at origo.hu, pulbished an expose of lavish
business expenses claimed by Janos Lazar, chief of cabinet to PM
Vikto Orban. Saling was soon out of a job and some 30 journalists
resigned amid claims that political pressure forced Saling out.
(Econ, 6/14/14, p.47)
2014 Jun 11, Hungary’s
parliament passed a new tax on advertising revenue which media said
would bankrupt them.
(Econ, 6/14/14, p.47)
2014 Jun 11, London’s new
Trafficking and Kidnap Unit of its Metropolitan Police arrested six
people suspected of sex trafficking. The arrests were part of an
ongoing investigation of a Hungarian organized crime group.
2014 Jul 22, Canada’s Public
Safety Minister said twenty members of a Hungarian human trafficking
ring have been deported.
(SFC, 7/23/14, p.A2)c
2014 Jul 26, Hungary’s PM
Viktor Orban said that the 2008 financial crisis showed that liberal
democracies would likely no longer remain competitive and pointed to
Singapore, China and Russia as successful role models.
2014 Jul 29, A Hungarian
opposition group said it would ask the EU to step up its oversight
of democracy in Hungary after PM Orban said he wants to transform
the country from a liberal democracy into an "illiberal state."
2014 Sep 8, Hungarian police
raided two NGOs responsible for distributing Norwegian grants aimed
at strengthening civil society in poorer parts of Europe. Norway
suspended payments in response to a government audit of NGOs such as
the Roma Press Center, Women for Women against Violence and the
Labrisz Lesbian Association.
(Econ, 9/13/14, p.68)
2014 Sep 25, Hungary
unexpectedly cut off natural gas shipments to Ukraine. Hungary had
been sending an estimated 3 million cubic meters of natural gas a
day to Ukraine, which has not received any from Russia since June.
2014 Oct 12, In Hungary PM
Viktor Orban’s Fidesz party was the clear winner in municipal
elections. The far-right Jobbik party made significant gains in
rural areas, where it has become the main challenger to Orban's
(AP, 10/13/14)(SFC, 10/13/14, p.A2)
2014 Oct 17, The United States
said it has issued entry bans to several Hungarians suspected of
corruption, including people connected to the government.
2014 Oct 28, In Hungary tens of
thousands of protesters marched in Budapest against a plan by the
government to tax Internet use from 2015. This was the 2nd big rally
in three days.
(SFC, 10/29/14, p.A2)
2014 Oct 31, Hungary's PM
Viktor Orban said that the government would suspend a planned tax on
Internet use and reconsider the matter next year.
2014 Nov 5, The head of
Hungary's tax authority, Ildiko Vida, acknowledged in a published
report that she has been banned from entering the US because of
suspected links to corruption. She denied the unspecified
allegations, and said that the ban also affects other officials from
NAV, Hungary's tax authority.
2014 Nov 17, In Hungary over
10,000 people gathered outside the parliament in Budapest to protest
against alleged corruption and the centralization of power.
(Econ, 11/22/14, p.46)
2014 Dec 4, Hungary's economy
minister says the state has signed a preliminary deal to buy
Budapest Bank, the country’s 8th largest bank by assets, from
General Electric by June 30.
2014 Dec 7, Russia’s Pres.
Vladimir Putin discussed energy collaboration with leaders of
Hungary and Serbia.
2014 Dec 9, The Hungarian
government said it has signed three contracts with a Russian company
which will allow construction in 2018 of new reactors at the
country's only nuclear power plant.
2014 Dec 11, The head of
Hungary's tax authority sued a senior American diplomat in Budapest
for libel after the envoy said the US had knowledge of corruption at
the tax office.
2014 Dec 17, China secured a
deal to construct a high-speed train link between the Belgrade and
Budapest that will cut travel time between the Serbian and Hungarian
capitals from eight hours to less than three.
2015 Jan 2, In Hungary some
5000 thousand people protested at what they see as the country's
move towards Russia in the latest demonstration against the
government of controversial PM Viktor Orban.
2015 Jan 26, Hungary’s PM
Viktor Orban overcame unease within his government to acknowledge
the country’s role in the Holocaust, saying many people in the
central European country acted "shamefully" in World War II.
2015 Feb 1, In Hungary some
three thousand protesters in Budapest demanded the ouster of PM
Viktor Orban's government.
2015 Feb 17, In Hungary PM
Viktor Orban hosted Russian Pres. Vladimir Putin and reached a
political agreement on a new gas deal.
(SFC, 2/18/15, p.A2)
2015 Feb 22, Hungary's ruling
right-wing alliance lost its two-thirds majority in parliament after
the opposition won a by-election, hampering PM Viktor Orban's
chances of changing the constitution and passing major legislation.
2015 Feb 27, Hungarian PM
Victor Orban denounced multiculturalism and liberalism and vowed to
fight a wave of migration that he says is threatening to turn his
country into a refugee camp.
2015 Apr 14, Hungary approved a
proposal to send up to 150 troops to help guard a military training
center in the northern Iraqi city of Irbil as part of international
efforts against Islamic State extremists in a mission to continue to
2015 May 19, Britain’s Man
Booker Int’l. Prize was awarded to Hungarian novelist Laszlo
Kraszhnahorkai, shortly after his latest novel “Seiobo There Below"
was translated by Ottilie Mulzet.
(Econ, 5/23/15, p.72)
2015 Jun 6, China's foreign
ministry said Hungary has become the first European country to sign
a cooperation agreement for the new "Silk Road" initiative to
develop trade and transport infrastructure across Asia and beyond.
2015 Jun 22, Hungary said its
police will help patrol the Serbia-Macedonia border to try to stem
the flow of migrants and refugees attempting to reach the European
2015 Jul 6, Hungary's
parliament overwhelmingly approved the construction of a
controversial fence on the border with Serbia to keep out migrants.
2015 Jul 13, Hungary said it
has begun building a fence on the country's southern border with
Serbia, meant to stem the unprecedented flow of migrants. Around
80,000 migrants and refugees have reached Hungary so far this year.
About 80 percent of them are from war-torn countries like Syria,
Iraq and Afghanistan. 900 soldiers were tasked with building the
fence using materials prepared by inmates.
(AP, 7/13/15)(SFC, 7/17/15, p.A3)
2015 Aug 3, Hungarian soldiers
began building a fence on the border with Serbia meant to stop the
flow of migrants trying to enter the EU.
(SFC, 8/4/15, p.A2)
2015 Aug 7, The European Union
appealed to member countries to live up to pledges to provide planes
and other assets so that its border agency can help Greece and
Hungary cope with a migrant influx.
2015 Aug 25, A record 2,533
mainly Syrians, Afghans and Pakistanis crossed from Serbia into EU
2015 Aug 26, Hungary made plans
to reinforce its southern border with helicopters, mounted police
and dogs, and was also considering using the army as record numbers
of migrants, many of them Syrian refugees, passed through coils of
razor-wire into Europe. Over 140,000 have been caught entering so
far this year.
2015 Aug 29, Hungary arrested
four men suspected of being involved in the deaths of 71 migrants
found in a truck in Austria. They included three Bulgarians and one
Afghan. A fifth suspect, a Bulgarian national, was arrested in the
evening. In 2017 eleven men were indicted in the case.
(AP, 8/29/15)(AP, 8/30/15)(AP, 5/4/17)
2015 Sep 1, In Hungary hundreds
of angry migrants demonstrated outside Budapest's Eastern Railway
Terminus demanding they be allowed to travel on to Germany, as EU
asylum rules came close to collapse under the strain of
2015 Sep 3, Hungarian police
halted a train packed with migrants bound for the Austrian border
and tried to force them to disembark in a town with a detention
camp, a confrontation that has become a focus of Europe's migration
2015 Sep 4, Hungary's
parliament introduced emergency anti-migration laws, in a tough
response to the record number of refugees and migrants crossing the
EU member's border as they try to reach western Europe. Hundreds of
migrants broke out of a border camp and others set off on foot from
Budapest as authorities scrambled to contain a migrant crisis that
has brought Europe’s asylum system to breaking point.
(AFP, 9/4/15)(Reuters, 9/4/15)
2015 Sep 4, In a joint
statement the prime ministers of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland
and Slovakia rejected any quota system for accepting migrants in the
European Union's 28 members.
2015 Sep 4, Austria and Germany
threw open their borders to thousands of exhausted migrants, bussed
to the Hungarian border by a right-wing government that had tried to
stop them but was overwhelmed by the sheer numbers reaching Europe’s
(Reuters, 9/5/15)(Econ, 10/1/16, p.54)
2015 Sep 11, Hungary's PM
Viktor Orban angrily accused illegal migrants of "rebelling" against
the rule of law in his country as security forces across Europe
struggled to control record flows of hungry, scared refugees.
2015 Sep 14, Hungarian police
rounded up a total of 7,437 migrants crossing the Serbian border by
1400 GMT (10 a.m. EDT), by far the highest daily figure this year.
2015 Sep 15, Germany called for
an EU summit on Europe's biggest migrant crisis since World War II
as Hungary's right-wing government shut the main land route for
migrants into the EU, taking matters into its own hands to halt
Europe's influx of refugees. Berlin called for financial penalties
against countries that refused to accommodate their share of
migrants, drawing a furious response from central Europe.
(Reuters, 9/15/15)(AFP, 9/15/15)
2015 Sep 16, Hungarian police
fired tear gas and water cannon at protesting migrants demanding
they be allowed to enter from Serbia as a border crackdown by
Budapest turned violent. A group of migrants crossed into Hungary
illegally. Ahmed Hamed, a Syrian-Cypriot, spoke to the crowd using a
loudspeaker before hundreds of migrants forced open the border gate
and police fired water cannon and teargas. In 2018 Hamed was
sentenced in a preliminary ruling to seven years in prison for
illegally crossing the border and for being an accomplice in "an act
of terror" during clashes with the police.
(Reuters, 9/16/15)(Reuters, 3/14/18)
2015 Sep 18, Croatia’s PM Zoran
Milanovic warned matters were out of control and that his government
would no longer be able to register or accommodate the migrants.
Hundreds of migrants crossed into Hungary from Croatia, handed over
by bus under the watch of Hungarian security forces. Some 8,000
migrants arrived in Hungary from Croatia with more on their way.
(Reuters, 9/18/15)(Reuters, 9/19/15)
2015 Sep 20, Hungary erected a
steel gate and fence posts at a border crossing with Croatia.
2015 Oct 6, Arpad Goncz (93),
Hungary's first democratically-elected president (1990-2000 and
widely-respected former dissident, died.
2015 Oct 14, The EU parliament
lifted immunity for Bela Kovacs, a member of Hungary's far-right
Jobbik party. Hungarian prosecutors suspected him of spying on EU
institutions for Russia. Covert contacts between Kovacs and Russian
intelligence officers were first detected in 2010.
2015 Oct 15, The Hungarian
government announced that it has completed its construction of a
fence alongside its southern border with Croatia, to stem the
massive daily influx of migrants. The government said it would
decide on a date to completely seal the border in the coming days.
2015 Oct 16, Hungary said it
will close down its border with Croatia, where it has built a
razor-wire fence, to the free flow of migrants at midnight. Croatia
said it has a plan to manage the flow of migrants agreed with
Slovenia that it will start implementing when Hungary seals off the
(AP, 10/16/15)(Reuters, 10/16/15)
2015 Oct 17, Hungary said it
will temporarily reinstate border controls on its frontier with
Slovenia, after his government sealed off its border with Croatia
overnight to stem the flow of migrants. Migrants streaming across
the Balkans reached Slovenia, diverted overnight by the closure of
Hungary’s border with Croatia.
2015 Dec 3, Hungary said it had
filed a legal challenge to the European Union's plan to distribute
160,000 asylum-seekers among member states under a quota system.
2015 Dec 10, The European
Commission launched an "infringement case" against Hungary over its
asylum legislation, a move Budapest dismissed as an act of revenge
for its rejection of mandatory migrant quotas.
2016 Jan 24, In Hungary
hundreds of people rallied in Budapest against government plans to
bring in anti-terror measures including restrictions on the Internet
2016 Feb 13, Thousands of
Hungarians protested against education reforms implemented by PM
Viktor Orban, which critics see as another attempt by the right-wing
leader to boost his control over state institutions.
2016 Feb 17, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban, on a visit to Moscow, called for better relations
between Russia and Europe.
2016 Mar 1, Hungary's
parliament approved legal amendments restricting access to public
information about the state-owned postal services, and businesses
and foundations established by the National Bank of Hungary.
2016 Mar 30, In Hungary
hundreds of teachers across the country walked out of class for one
hour, demanding changes to official policies, including cutting
bureaucratic tasks, greater choice in textbooks, more funds for
education and reducing students' mandatory school time.
2016 Mar 31, Imre Kertesz (86),
the Hungarian writer who won the 2002 Nobel Prize for Literature for
a body of fiction largely drawn from his experience as a teenage
prisoner in Nazi concentration camps, died at his Budapest home.
"Fateless," the novel that together with other works brought him the
2002 Nobel, finally appeared in 1975 after a decade-long struggle to
have it published.
2016 Mar 31, In Hungary Bela
Biszku (b.1921), the only high-ranking communist-era official to be
tried for his role in the repression after the 1956 revolution, died
in Budapest. Biszku, who served as interior minister between March
1957 and September 1961, denied any involvement but was sentenced in
2014 to five years and six months in prison for war crimes and other
charges, including his role in nearly 50 deaths.
2016 Apr 20, In Hungary nearly
25,000 of about 150,000 teachers in some 1,200 of 5,000 schools
walked out on a one-day strike to demand more freedom, more
financing and lighter workloads for themselves and their students.
Teachers have been protesting for months against moves by the
right-wing government of PM Viktor Orban to strip schools of much of
their autonomy and increase central planning and management.
2016 Apr 23, Two Britons and an
Indian were arrested in Hungary accused of trying to transport more
than a dozen migrants illegally to Austria.
2016 May 26, The European Union
issued a warning to Hungary about discrimination against Roma
children in the country's education system.
2016 Jun 7, Hungarian lawmakers
approved a constitutional amendment granting the government extended
powers, including the possibility of deploying the armed forces, in
case of terror acts or threats.
2016 Jul 29, German automaker
Daimler's Mercedes-Benz brand said it will build a new manufacturing
plant in Hungary by the end of the decade, investing 1 billion euros
($1.11 billion) and creating 2,500 new jobs.
2016 Aug 26, PM Viktor Orban
said Hungary will build a new, "more massive" fence on its southern
borders to defend against a possible surge in the number of
2016 Sep 4, Katrina Lantos
Swett, who received Hungary’s Knight's Cross of the Order of Merit
in 2009, joined over 100 other recipients in returning their awards
to protest the bestowing of the same award to journalist and writer
Zsolt Bayer who has made anti-Semitic and racist references in his
articles. Swett is the daughter of late, Hungarian-born US
Congressman Tom Lantos, the only Holocaust survivor in the US
2016 Sep 7, Hungarian
prosecutors said camerawoman Petra Laszlo, who was filmed kicking
and trying to trip migrants near Hungary's border with Serbia on
September 8, 2015, has been indicted for breaching the peace.
2016 Sep 13, Luxembourg Foreign
Minister Jean Asselborn said that Hungary should be excluded from
the European Union for anti-migrant policies that undermine EU
values, including erecting a razor-wire fence, provoking a scornful
riposte from Budapest.
2016 Sep 24, In Hungary an
explosion rocked central Budapest late today, injuring two police
2016 Oct 2, Hungary held a
referendum on refugee quotas. Only 40% of the electorate cast valid
votes. Low turnout invalidated the referendum against EU refugee
quotas but showed nearly unanimous support for the government
position among its supporters.
(AP, 10/3/16)(Econ, 10/8/16, p.50)
2016 Oct 8, In Hungary
publishing company Mediaworks announced that it was temporarily
shutting down the Nepszabadsag newspaper because of considerable
losses. The nearly 60-year-old paper's sudden disappearance,
including blocked access to its valuable online archives, came days
after its reporters uncovered several scandals involving suspicions
of corruption by government ministers and the head of the National
Bank of Hungary, a close ally of Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
2016 Oct 13, In Hungary tax
investigators raided the offices of environmental group Energia
Klub, seizing hundreds of documents and computer files as part of
what they said was a "criminal investigation into budgetary fraud".
2016 Oct 26, A Hungarian
policeman (46) was shot dead with a machine gun early today when
police tried to search the home of a man (76) suspected of illegal
possession of firearms in bony.
2016 Nov 15, Hungarian police
said anti-terror squads have detained 12 people in eight localities
suspected of involvement with the extremist Hungarian National
2016 Nov 25, In Hungary
far-right Asotthalom mayor Laszlo Toroczkai said councilors have
voted to ban the construction of mosques and the activity of
muezzins, as well as the use of veils and headscarves like burqas,
chadors and burkinis worn by Muslim women.
2016 Dec 18, Zsa Zsa Gabor
(99), Hungarian actress and celebrity, died of a heart attack in
2017 Jan 13, Hungary's
right-wing PM Viktor Orban said he has defied Brussels by
reintroducing the systematic detention of migrants arriving in the
country in response to recent "terror" attacks in Europe.
2017 Jan 20, In northern Italy
a bus carrying Hungarian students home from a school ski trip to
France slammed into a highway barrier and burst into flames just
before midnight, killing at least 16 people. 39 others survived, but
some were seriously injured.
2017 Feb 1, Hungary’s PM Viktor
Orban granted 2.4 billion forints ($9 million) in the budget to the
renovating and building of Russian Orthodox churches, the day before
he received Russia’s Pres. Putin in Budapest.
2017 Feb 9, Hungary said it
plans to hold migrants in border camps made up of shipping
containers while their asylum requests are settled.
2017 Feb 27, Hungary said it
has begun building a second fence on its border with Serbia to stop
migrants from freely entering the country.
2017 Mar 2, The Czech Republic,
Hungary, Poland and Slovakia urged the European Union to boost the
role of national parliaments under a planned overhaul of the bloc's
2017 Mar 3, Hungary’s Opimus
Group, a major print and online media company, said Lorinc Meszaros,
a close ally of PM Viktor Orban, has acquired an ownership stake in
the company, adding weight to suspicions that the company's closure
of the largest opposition newspaper last year was politically
2017 Mar 6, The European Union
said it has cleared Hungary to build two nuclear reactors with
Russian help after Budapest made commitments to safeguard
competition in the energy sector.
2017 Mar 7, Hungary's
parliament approved the systematic detention of all asylum-seekers
in container camps, in a move that PM Viktor Orban said will make
all of Europe safer from terror attacks.
2017 Mar 13, Hungarian
lawmakers re-elected President Janos Ader to his largely ceremonial
post, ensuring another five-year term for a supporter of populist PM
Viktor Orban's government.
2017 Mar 13, In Hungary nearly
100 migrants began a hunger strike at a detention center, demanding
that they be allowed to leave the Bekescsaba camp on the Romanian
2017 Mar 20, Hungary's defense
minister inaugurated a small military base on the country's southern
border for soldiers patrolling to prevent the entry of migrants.
2017 Mar 28, The central
European Visegrad Group (Czech Rep., Hungary, Poland and Slovakia)
rejected a European Union policy that calls for all member states to
receive migrants, protesting suggestions that the level of their
compliance could be linked to the availability of EU funds to them.
2017 Mar 31, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban said the Central European University (CEU) in Budapest,
founded by financier George Soros, had "cheated" in awarding its
diplomas and violated Hungarian laws. Hungarian scholars and
teaching organizations have come out in support of CEU, saying it
was one of the preeminent centers of thought in the country and
deserved to be saved.
2017 Apr 1, Hungary launched an
anti-EU campaign that asked households in a survey their advice on
how to deal with Brussels policies that it says threaten Hungarians'
2017 Apr 4, Hungary’s PM Viktor
Orban fast-tracked a new law on that could force the Central
European University (CEU), founded by financier George Soros, out of
the country despite protests against the plan in Budapest and
condemnation abroad. CEU, founded in Budapest in 1991, has 1,440
(Reuters, 4/4/17)(Econ, 4/8/17, p.45)
2017 Apr 6, Hungary said it
will cooperate with Iran on setting up a small nuclear reactor for
2017 Apr 10, Hungary’s Pres.
Janos Ader signed amendments to the country’s higher education law
that could force the Central European Univ., founded by George
Soros, to close or move. A day earlier some 70,000 people rallied to
(SFC, 4/11/17, p.A3)
2016 Apr 10, The UN said
European countries must stop returning asylum seekers to Hungary due
to deteriorating conditions there for new arrivals including
children, and allegations of abuse.
2017 Apr 12, Hungary’s
Education Secretary Laszlo Palkovics the Central European Univ.
(CEU) could issue diplomas if it extended a license agreement with
its Hungarian sister school to teach its courses. A recent law
stipulated that the CEU, viewed as a bastion of independent thinking
in eastern Europe, must open a branch in its home state of New York
alongside its campus in Budapest and secure a bilateral agreement of
support from the US government.
2017 Apr 25, In Hungary
activists broke up a meeting of the parliament's justice committee,
in a protest against plans to increase scrutiny over civil
2017 Apr 25, Prosecutors in
Hungary said they have indicted Roland Mengyi, a lawmaker from the
ruling Fidesz party, and six accomplices for attempting to embezzle
2017 Apr 28, Hungary said it
has completed a second anti-migrant fence on the Serbian border, a
"smart" barrier with night cameras, heat and movement sensors and
speakers blaring warnings in five languages.
2017 May 15, Hungarian police
arrested Horst Mahler, a notorious German neo-Nazi, in the
northwestern city of Sopron. He had been seeking asylum after
fleeing to avoid serving a prison sentence for Holocaust denial and
2017 May 17, EU lawmakers
called on Hungary to withdraw tough new laws on asylum seekers and
2017 Jun 2, Hungary's PM Viktor
Orban said that harsh criticism by billionaire George Soros is a
"declaration of war." Soros has accused Orban of running a corrupt
"mafia state." Orban alleged that the Hungarian-American investor
was paying "agent-like networks" of non-governmental organizations
to enforce his policies, including the promotion of migration, in
Europe and Hungary.
2017 Jun 13, Hungary's
parliament approved a crackdown on foreign-backed civil society
groups despite an international outcry, in a move seen as targeting
US billionaire George Soros.
2017 Jun 13, The European
Commission said that Poland, Hungary and the Czech Republic have
breached their legal obligations to take some refugees as part of
the 2015 plan, which is aimed at sharing the burden of 160,000
migrants at camps in Italy and Greece.
2017 Jun 14, The European
Commission launched legal action against the Czech Republic, Hungary
and Poland for failing their commitment to take in refugees.
2017 Jun 23, Lawmakers from
Hungary's governing parties approved legislation on political
advertising. The new rules ban billboard owners from giving
discounts to most political parties.
2017 Jun 23, French President
Emmanuel Macron and four eastern European Union leaders (Visegrad-4)
sought to turn the page after publicly trading barbs over their
differences on issues ranging from jobs to the bloc’s fundamental
values. Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic say they
should be allowed to compete on lower prices - just as more
developed western EU nations compete on quality products and
know-how - to catch up after decades of communist stagnation.
2017 Jul 9, Israel's ambassador
to Hungary issued a statement denouncing Hungary’s campaign against
US billionaire George Soros, saying it "evokes sad memories but also
sows hatred and fear." Hours later Israel's foreign ministry issued
a statement denouncing Soros, a move that appeared designed to align
Israel more closely with Hungary ahead of a visit to Budapest next
week by PM Benjamin Netanyahu.
2017 Jul 12, Hungary said that
it would end a public information poster campaign attacking George
Soros that the US billionaire and others said smacked of
anti-Semitism. The campaign would end July 15, three days
before a visit by Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu.
2017 Jul 12, Qatar received its
first herd of boycott-busting cows to boost milk supplies five weeks
after neighboring Gulf states cut links with the emirate. Several
dozen Holsteins were flown in from Budapest, the first of 4,000 to
be imported by August.
2017 Jul 13, The European Union
launched legal action against Hungary because of new rules governing
civic groups which receive funds from abroad. The European
Commission said that the law approved by Hungary's parliament in
June could prevent nongovernmental organizations "from raising funds
and would restrict their ability to carry out their work."
2017 Jul 18, Hungary's PM
Viktor Orban told visiting Israeli leader Benjamin Netanyahu that
his country stood firmly against anti-Semitism today after the
"crime" of failing to protect its Jewish citizens during World War
Two. Netanyahu's visit is the first to Hungary by a serving Israeli
prime minister since the fall of communism. He will also meet the
Polish, Czech and Slovak leaders in Budapest on July 19.
2017 Jul 19, In Hungary Israeli
PM Benjamin Netanyahu met with leaders of Poland, Hungary, the Czech
Republic and Slovakia at a regional summit. He was caught by a live
microphone railing against the European Union's "crazy" insistence
on resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as a precondition for
closer ties with the 28-state bloc, and trumpeting Israel as
essential to its prosperity and survival.
2017 Jul 25, In Hungary two
Romanian women and a man were killed when a minibus crashed into the
back of a truck that had stopped on the shoulder on a highway while
traveling to Romania.
2017 Aug 10, Temperatures in
Serbia, Romania, Hungary and Croatia were expected to reach 39
degrees Celsius (102 Fahrenheit) again today following a few days of
less oppressive heat. Evidence continued to up that this year's hot
summer in central and southeastern Europe has decimated crops,
drained rivers and hurt the animal world.
2017 Aug 25, Hungary said it is
recalling its ambassador to the Netherlands and suspending
high-level diplomatic ties in response to critical remarks by the
Dutch ambassador about Hungary. Scheltema was critical of Hungary's
unwillingness to participate in a European Union plan to relocate
asylum-seekers from Greece and Italy. He also criticized the
Hungarian government's campaign against billionaire financier and
philanthropist George Soros and drew parallels between the
government's efforts to "create enemies" and those of the Islamic
2017 Aug 31, Hungary's PM
Viktor Orban asked the European Union to pay for half of the cost of
anti-migrant fences it built on its southern borders, or about 440
million euros ($523 million).
2017 Sep 6, The European
Union's highest court ruled that EU states must take in a share of
refugees who reach Europe, dismissing complaints by Slovakia and
Hungary and reigniting an angry row between east and west.
2017 Sep 19, Hungary said it is
set to launch another state "national consultation" about US
financier and philanthropist George Soros (87), six months before
expected general elections.
2017 Sep 22, Poland's PM Beata
Szydlo and Hungary’s PM Viktor Orban met in Warsaw and insisted that
they will stick to their anti-migrant policies in defiance of the
European Union and warnings of sanctions.
2017 Sep 25, Ukraine's
president signed a controversial law on education, causing fury in
Hungary which is threatening to block Ukraine's efforts to integrate
with the EU. The law restructures Ukraine's education system and
specifies that Ukrainian will be the main language used in schools,
rolling back the option for lessons to be taught in other languages.
2017 Oct 13, Austria said it
would launch a lawsuit against the European Union's approval of the
Russian-financed expansion of a nuclear plant in Hungary. The
approval, granted in March, removed the last major obstacle to the
12.5 billion euro ($13.2 billion) expansion of the Paks plant,
Hungary's only nuclear facility.
2017 Oct 16, Hungary said it
will "block and boycott" all attempts to draw Ukraine more deeply
into the European Union unless Kiev changes a new education law that
rolls back options for schools to teach lessons in languages other
2017 Nov 7, In Jordan King
Abdullah II and Hungarian President János Áder opened the World
Science Forum, a gathering of scientists and policy makers, and
called for science as a path to peace.
2017 Nov 15, Hungary's foreign
minister accused the United States government of meddling in his
country's internal affairs and upcoming election campaign by
offering to fund "objective media in Hungary." Practically all major
newspapers published outside Budapest are now in the hands of
pro-government publishers, some of whom also own television or radio
2017 Nov 20, US financier
George Soros (86) denounced a Hungarian government campaign against
him as "distortions and lies" designed to create a false external
2017 Nov 26, Hungarian Foreign
Minister Peter Szijjarto said that China and 16 European countries
would sign 23 cooperation agreements as China's Premier Le Keqiang
arrived in Hungary to participate in a summit with countries from
central and eastern Europe.
2017 Nov 27, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban, host of the "16+1" summit, said the region was in need
of external technological and financial resources, including from
China, to grow. China’s Premier Li Keqiang outlined his hope that
his country's closer cooperation with central and eastern Europe
will help foster prosperity in the region.
2017 Nov 28, Officials in
Serbia inaugurated the reconstruction of the railway line between
Serbia and Hungary, a project financed mostly by China and its "new
Silk Road" initiative to expand commercial ties with Europe, Asia
2017 Dec 1, Hungarian-American
financier and philanthropist George Soros (87) said that oppression
of the opposition by PM Viktor Orban's government is greater than
when Hungary was under Soviet domination.
2017 Dec 5, Turkish prosecutors
launched an investigation following media reports that 11 members of
a Turkish folk dancing group were seeking asylum in Hungary.
2017 Dec 6, Bela Kovacs, a
Hungarian member of the European Parliament and a member of the
nationalist opposition Jobbik party, was indicted for allegedly
spying on the European Union. Charges also included fraud totaling
21,076 euros ($24,900) stemming from the fictitious employment of
interns in the EU parliament in 2012 to 2013.
2017 Dec 7, The European Union
announced that it is taking the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland
to court for failing to accommodate their fair share of refugees
under a plan agreed to by the 28-country bloc two years ago.
2017 Dec 14, The Czech
Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia announced that they plan to
spend around 35 million euros ($41 million) to beef up European
Union borders as they come under pressure for refusing to accept
2018 Jan 3, The prime ministers
of Hungary and Poland said their countries' anti-immigration
policies are gaining strength within the 28-nation European Union.
2018 Jan 8, It was reported
that Hungary's State Audit Office (ASZ) has fined the main,
nationalist opposition party Jobbik 331.66 million forints ($1.29
million) for an anti-government billboard campaign funded by a
wealthy adversary of PM Viktor Orban.
2018 Feb 9, Hungary's PM Viktor
Orban said a forthcoming deal to import natural gas from neighboring
Romania means that the "age of the Russian gas monopoly in Hungary
2018 Feb 14, Human rights group
Amnesty International slammed Hungary's new anti-migration bill,
saying it would allow the government to target any non-governmental
organization working with migrants if it becomes law.
2018 Mar 7, Hungarian PM Viktor
Orban announced new pre-election handouts to families and
pensioners, saying the government would provide heating subsidies
and a one-off voucher for food purchases to pensioners.
2018 Mar 7, The EU’s executive
branch pointed the finger at Belgium, Cyprus, Hungary, Ireland,
Luxembourg, Malta and the Netherlands for "aggressive" tax policies
designed to undercut others to attract multinational companies.
2018 Mar 15, Tens of thousands
of supporters of Hungary's right-wing PM Viktor Orban marched in
Budapest to back his bid for a third term in office in April
elections, many of them hailing his hardline stance on immigration.
They were joined by thousands of supporters of Poland's ruling
conservative PiS party.
2018 Apr 4, Russia's foreign
ministry said it was expelling one Hungarian diplomat in response to
Budapest's decision to expel a Russian diplomat.
2018 Apr 8, Hungarians voted in
an election that is being keenly watched across Europe, with
firebrand nationalist PM Viktor Orban tipped to win a third
consecutive term and press ahead with his anti-immigration agenda.
Orban's Fidesz party won a two-thirds majority for the third time
straight time in the election, meaning he again has the powers to
change constitutional laws - potentially paving the way for further
friction with the EU.
(AFP, 4/8/18)(Reuters, 4/9/18)
2018 Apr 10, One of Hungary's
two national opposition dailies said it will shut down due to
financial problems. Magyar Nemzet, owned by Lajos Simicska's media
holdings, once highly profitable, incurred heavy losses after
Simicska fell out with Pres. Orban and his publications were
deprived of government advertising.
2018 May 10, Hungary's
parliament elected PM Viktor Orban to his third consecutive term and
forth overall term in office.
2018 May 15, The Open Society
Foundations of billionaire philanthropist, George Soros, said it is
relocating its headquarters to Berlin from Budapest in the wake of
an "increasingly repressive" environment in Hungary.
2018 May 18, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban has taken office for a third straight term and used the
moment to call for beefed-up borders to cope with migrants.
2018 May 22, In Hungary nine
Romanians were killed when the bus they were traveling in slammed
into an oncoming truck 60km southeast of Budapest.
2018 Jun 14, In Hungary the
four main suspects involved in the gruesome deaths of 71 migrants in
a truck on an Austrian highway in 2015 were jailed for 25 years, in
a case that sparked international revulsion. Ten other suspects were
also found guilty over the deaths and handed prison sentences of up
to 12 years by the court in the southern town of Kecskemet. Three
were tried in absentia. The bodies were already in an advanced state
of decomposition when they were discovered in an abandoned poultry
refrigerator lorry on August 27, 2015.
2018 Jun 20, Hungary's
parliament approved a package of bills that criminalizes some help
given to illegal immigrants, defying the European Union and human
rights groups and narrowing the scope for action by non-governmental
2018 Jun 21, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban said leaders of the Visegrad Four countries Hungary,
Poland, Slovakia and the Czech Republic will skip a European Union
mini-summit on the migration crisis this weekend. He said such
meetings of state leaders should be organized by the European
Council, the bloc's top decision-making body, not the European
Commission. Orban said the Visegrad Four group of countries and
Austria have agreed to beef up the European Union's external border
defense and process migrants outside the EU's borders.
2018 Jun 21, UN High
Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad al Hussein said new
Hungarian laws that criminalize people for helping asylum-seekers
are shameful and blatantly xenophobic.
2018 Jun 25, EU lawmakers voted
for launching action against Hungary over allegations that PM Viktor
Orban's government is breaching the bloc's fundamental values.
2018 Jul 13, All 193 UN member
nations except the United States, which pulled out last year,
approved the Global Compact For Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration.
On July 18 Hungary said it will quit the migration pact before its
final approval, calling the agreement a "threat to the world".
2018 Jul 15, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban denounced EU sanctions imposed on Russia, during a
visit to Pres. Vladimir Putin in Moscow ahead of the Moscow World
2018 Jul 18, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban arrived for a controversial visit to Israel as he and
his counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu find common cause in their
2018 Jul 19, The European
Commission stepped up a legal battle with Hungary over EU migration
rules and denounced as illegal its "Stop Soros" law that
criminalizes support for asylum seekers.
2018 Jul 24, Hungary's PM
Viktor Orban offered to help small Montenegro guard its borders
against migrants, insisting that the Balkans should remain closed
for people trying to reach Western Europe.
2018 Jul 27, Hungary's
right-wing PM Viktor Orban welcomed the idea of Steve Bannon's new
anti-European Union group, The Movement, saying it was time that
someone from the United States came to Europe to spread conservative
thinking instead of liberal values.
2018 Aug 1, In Hungary new
management close to PM Viktor Orban took over a prominent news
television channel, cementing his ruling Fidesz party's dominance of
the media as it solidifies its hold on power.
2018 Aug 23, The European Court
of Human Rights (ECHR) said Hungary must provide food to asylum
seekers held in detention camps on its border with Serbia whose
applications have been rejected by Budapest but who are appealing
2018 Aug 28, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban and Italy's far-right Interior Minister Matteo Salvini
launched an anti-migration manifesto, namechecking French Pres.
Emmanuel Macron as their adversary. Macron has blasted Italy and
Hungary for maintaining an uncompromising stance on migrants while
readily accepting EU development funding.
2018 Aug, Vladimir Lyubishin
Jr. and Sr. were flown to Moscow and jailed pending investigation
and trial. They had been in a Hungarian jail, charged in an
elaborate plot to ship weapons to Mexican drug cartels and cocaine
to the US.
2018 Sep 7, The Hungarian
government granted ownership of a new Holocaust museum, called the
House of Fates, to the Unified Hungarian Jewish Congregation (EMIH),
one of the three registered Jewish groups in Hungary. PM Viktor
Orban's right-wing government planned to open the museum next year
to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the deportation of Hungarian
Jews to death camps in German-occupied Poland. The new museum has
divided Hungary's Jewish community and triggered international
concerns that it will downplay the wartime role of Hungarians in the
persecution and deportation of Jews.
2018 Sep 11, The European
Commission backed a European Parliament report condemning Hungary
for abusing human rights and for the mistreatment of Roma
communities, Hungary's PM Viktor Orban rejected European Parliament
efforts to impose sanctions on Budapest over accusations of
corruption, rights abuses and authoritarianism, saying he had the
right to ban migrants from the country.
2018 Sep 12, The European
Parliament voted 448-197 to sanction Hungary for flouting EU rules
on democracy, civil rights and corruption in an unprecedented step
that left PM Viktor Orban isolated from powerful allies.
2018 Sep 13, Hungary said a
European Parliament vote to launch an action that could ultimately
strip Budapest of its EU voting rights was "invalid" and vowed to
mount a legal challenge.
2018 Sep 18, President Vladimir
Putin, standing next to Hungarian PM Viktor Orban, said that the
Russian state atomic energy firm Rosatom would start the
construction of two new reactors at the Paks power nuclear plant in
Hungary soon. Orban told reporters that they had agreed on gas
supplies for 2020.
2018 Sep 24, The New York-based
Open Society Foundations (OSF) said in a statement that it had
submitted a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights in
Strasbourg, calling on it to "defend Hungarian democracy" and urge a
repeal of Hungary's controversial "Stop Soros" laws adopted last
2018 Sep 25, A news report said
European Commission inspectors have found widespread irregularities
in EU-financed projects in Hungary raising the risk that the EU
could withhold development funds worth $1.8 billion.
2018 Oct 1, Hungary's Index.hu,
the largest source of independent news in the country, briefly took
down the front page of its online portal to sound the alarm over
what it sees as its declining editorial freedom and to secure
funding from readers to help protect its independence.
2018 Oct 4, Hungary and Poland
said they have gone to the European Court of Justice to challenge
tighter European Union rules on the employment of workers from
low-pay EU states.
2018 Oct 4, Ukraine said it had
given a Hungarian consul 72 hours to leave the country after
accusing his consulate of illegally issuing passports to members of
an ethnic Hungarian minority in Ukraine. Ukraine's constitution bars
Ukrainians from holding citizenship of other countries. Hungary in
turn expelled a Ukrainian consul in Budapest and reiterated a threat
to block Ukraine's EU and NATO integration.
2018 Oct 25, Central European
University said it will move its US-accredited programs from
Budapest to the Austrian capital of Vienna because of the
"uncertain" academic environment in Hungary. Central European
University was founded by Hungarian-American billionaire and
philanthropist George Soros in 1991.
2018 Nov 6, Hungary's
government set out plans to create new administrative courts
overseen by the justice minister - a move the leftist opposition has
said will limit the independence of the judiciary.
2018 Nov 6, A Hungarian police
spokesman said that a probe opened in February on the basis of
findings by the European Union's anti-fraud office OLAF had been
2018 Nov 12, Macedonian police
issued an arrest warrant for former PM Nikola Gruevski, who resigned
in 2016 after 10 years in power, after he failed to show up to begin
his sentence following a Nov. 9 court ruling against his motion for
a reprieve. Gruevski fled to Hungary and submitted an asylum
2018 Nov 18, Croatian police
said international police organization Interpol has decided to renew
an arrest warrant for the head of Hungarian energy group MOL issued
by Croatia. MOL called the move surprising. MOL Chief Executive
Zsolt Hernadi has been indicted in Croatia for allegedly bribing
former Croatian PM Ivo Sanader to allow MOL to become the key
decision-maker in Croatian energy company INA, in which MOL is the
biggest but not the majority shareholder.
2018 Nov 20, Former Macedonian
premier Nikola Gruevski said that he has been granted asylum by
Hungary. He fled to Budapest after being sentenced to jail for abuse
2018 Dec 3, The Central
European University (CEU), founded by billionaire George Soros, said
it had been forced out of Hungary in "an arbitrary eviction" that
violated academic freedom, and it confirmed plans to open a new
campus in Austria.
2018 Dec 8, Hungarian trade
unions protested a government plan to raise workers' allowable
overtime from 250 to 400 hours a year and the relaxing of other
labor rules meant to offset Hungary's growing labor shortage.
2018 Dec 12, In Hungary rare
scenes of chaos gripped the parliament as it passed a controversial
judicial reform, as well as labor legislation that critics call a
2018 Dec 12, Hungary passed a
law to set up courts overseen directly by the justice minister, a
move critics said would allow political interference in judicial
matters and further undermine the rule of law.
2018 Dec 16, Thousands of
Hungarians protested in Budapest against a new labor law and what
they see as the increasingly authoritarian rule of right-wing
nationalist PM Viktor Orban.
2018 Dec 17, In Hungary
security forces physically ejected opposition lawmakers from the
headquarters of the state broadcaster MTVA in Budapest early today.
A group of 10 lawmakers had entered the building, insisting on the
right to read five demands live on air, including the revocation of
a new labor law, passed last week in parliament.
2018 Dec 20, Hungary's Pres.
Janos Ader said he has signed into law disputed amendments to labor
rules which greatly increase overtime hours employers can request
2018 Dec 21, In Hungary at
least 5,000 demonstrators took to the streets of the Budapest late
today, as rightwing nationalist PM Viktor Orban dismissed a wave of
protests against a new labor reform as "hysterical shouting".
2019 Jan 5, In Hungary
thousands marched through Budapest's city center to protest against
a new law that allows employers to ask staff to work up to 400 hours
per year of overtime.
2019 Jan 16, Hungary detained
Rui Pinto (30), a Portuguese man, on a European arrest warrant filed
by Portuguese police on suspicion of extortion and secrecy
violations. He had reportedly hacked football bodies' documents -
which later appeared on the Football Leaks website - because he was
"outraged" by criminality in the sport.
2019 Jan 19, In Hungary several
thousand people demonstrated in Budapest against PM Viktor Orban and
a new overtime law that has drawn workers out to the streets in
several protest rallies.
2019 Jan 24, The European
Commission said it was taking its legal procedure against Hungary to
the next step after Budapest criminalized support for migrants,
moving the case closer to a possible ruling by the European Court of
2019 Feb 1, The head of
Hungary's nationalistic Jobbik party said fines of nearly 1 billion
forints ($3.6 million) meted out by the state audit office for
alleged financial irregularities may force the party to shut down.
Jobbik's 20 lawmakers could continue as independents if the party
itself shuts down.
2019 Feb 4, A Hungarian court
sentenced to prison two former executives of an alumina plant
involved in the Oct. 4, 2010 red sludge flood, an industrial
disaster which killed eight people and injured more than 220.
2019 Feb 10, Hungary's PM
Viktor Orban said his government will be increasing financial aid
and subsidies for families with several children in an effort to
reverse the country's population decline.
(SFC, 2/11/19, p.A3)
2019 Feb 12, Thousands of
Hungarians rallied in Budapest outside a prestigious scientific
institution that says it is the victim of a new power grab by PM
Viktor Orban's government. Some of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences
(MTA) funding has already been slashed with laboratories temporarily
closing as a result.
2019 Feb 19, Hungary launched a
new anti-immigration media campaign in which it accused George Soros
and EU Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker of allegedly supporting
illegal migration. Brussels immediately this dismissed as "fake
2019 Feb 19, Israeli PM
Benjamin Netanyahu held back-to-back meetings with Slovak PM Peter
Pellegrini, Czech PM Andrej Babis and Hungarian PM Viktor Orban
before hosting all three for lunch at his official residence. The
series of sit-downs replaced a high-profile summit in Jerusalem that
was cancelled over a rift with Poland.
2019 Feb 21, Hungarian
opposition politicians accused the government of hypocrisy over a
program helping to settle Venezuelan refugees of Hungarian origin,
saying it contradicted the right-wing government's strict
2019 Feb 26, The Hungarian
government stepped up its campaign against the leadership of the
European Union, repeating its accusations that the EU seeks to
promote mass immigration into the continent.
2019 Mar 5, A Hungarian court
ruled that Rui Pinto, a Portuguese man linked to the publication of
internal documents that embarrassed top European clubs and soccer
officials in the Football Leaks case, will be extradited to his home
2019 Mar 8, In Hungary MTA
President Laszlo Lovasz and Innovations and Technology Minister
Laszlo Palkovics announced that they had reached an agreement to
separate the science research network from the academy's teaching
institutions. Staff members of the historic Hungarian Academy of
Sciences said their academic freedom has been threatened by a new
deal giving the nationalist government influence over its research
2019 Mar 22, Hungarian
authorities detained a Syrian man accused of taking part in
beheadings in Syria as a member of Islamic State.
2019 Mar 24, A Hungarian court
ordered the arrest of a 27-year-old Syrian man suspected of taking
part in beheadings in Syria as a member of Islamic State.
2019 Apr 9, It was reported
that a group of Hungarian business leaders and politicians close to
PM Viktor Orban have founded an international news agency in London
whose coverage will focus on central and eastern Europe. The new
company, called V4NA, was registered in London by Hungary's
ambassador to the UK, Kristof Szalay-Bobrovniczky, on Dec. 31, 2018.
Last month, Arpad Habony, Orban's main spin doctor and eminence
grise, acquired a 40 percent stake in V4NA via his London political
advisory firm, Danube Business Consulting Ltd. Subsequently, New
Wave Media Group, owned by KESMA, a foundation that controls most of
Hungary's pro-government media, acquired a 57 percent stake from
2019 May 2, Hungary's PM Viktor
Orban hosted hard-line Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini and
the two main opponents to immigration in Europe toured razor-wire
fences at the Hungarian border.
2019 May 3, The UN human rights
office said Hungary is deliberately depriving rejected asylum
seekers of food as they await deportation, in violation of
2019 May 7, Hungary deported
two families of Afghan asylum-seekers, including three children and
their pregnant mother, to Serbia late today. The deportation of a
third Afghan family was put on hold the net say after the Hungarian
Helsinki Committee secured an interim ruling in their favor at the
European Court of Human Rights.
2019 May 17, Hungary's PM
Viktor Orban confirmed his country's plans to buy medium-range air
defense missiles from the United States.
2019 May 28, It was reported
that Hungary is preparing legislation to strip the Hungarian Academy
of Sciences of its research network, giving the government more
control over scientific activity.
2019 May 30, Hungary
unexpectedly announced the indefinite suspension of a new
administrative court system, backtracking on a reform that had
raised concerns over judicial independence.
2019 May 30, In Hungary rescue
workers scoured the Danube River in downtown Budapest for 21 people
missing after a sightseeing boat carrying South Korean tourists sank
in a matter of seconds after colliding with a larger cruise ship
during an evening downpour. Seven people were confirmed dead and
seven were rescued, all of them South Koreans. Hungarian police soon
detained the captain of the cruise ship that collided a day earlier
with a sightseeing boat packed with South Korean tourists.
(AP, 5/30/19)(Reuters, 5/31/19)\
2019 Jun 4, Hungarian rescuers
said the death toll from the Danube River tour boat that collided
with a large cruise ship grew to 10 after they recovered another
2019 Jun 11, In Hungary rescue
crews raised the sunken Hableany (Mermaid) tour boat out of the
Danube River, shortly after four more bodies were recovered from the
vessel involved in a collision with a river cruise ship nearly two
weeks ago. Nineteen South Koreans and a Hungarian crewman have been
confirmed dead, with eight people still listed as missing.
2019 Jun 20, In Hungary four
human traffickers involved in the gruesome deaths of 71 migrants in
a truck abandoned on an Austrian highway in 2015 were jailed for
life, in a case that sparked international revulsion. Hungary took
over the proceedings from Vienna after it emerged that the migrants
had suffocated on Hungarian soil.
2019 Jun 27, A Hungarian court
refused to extradite former Macedonian prime minister Nikola
Gruevski, who fled abroad last year after being sentenced to two
years in prison on corruption-related charges. Gruevski was released
from custody on the court's order.
2019 Jun 28, Hungarian police
said a South Korean woman recovered from the Danube River has been
identified as the 26th fatality of the May 29 crash between a tour
boat and a cruise ship.
2019 Jul 2, Hungarian lawmakers
passed legislation to tighten state control of research bodies run
by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (MTA), overriding protests
against the latest step to expand the government's role in public
2019 Jul 19, Hungarian
philosopher Agnes Heller (90) died in Hungary. She was a student of
Gyorgy Lukacs and later taught political theory for 25 years at the
New School for Social Research in NYC.
2019 Aug 21, In Hungary three
South Korean citizens died in an accident late today, when the car
in which they were travelling was hit by a train.
2019 Sep 29, Hungary's national
food safety authority Nebih said it has found five cases of African
swine fever in wild boar carcasses near Budapest.
2019 Oct 13, Hungarian PM
Viktor Orban's dominant right-wing Fidesz party faced a challenge
from opposition parties, who backed joint candidates in many cities
in the country's nationwide local election. Fidesz suffered large
losses as opposition candidates won the mayoral race in Budapest and
other large cities.
(AP, 10/13/19)(SFC, 10/14/19, p.A2)
2019 Oct 30, Hungary vetoed a
joint NATO declaration on Ukraine as it did not contain a reference
to its neighbor's obligation to fully respect the rights of ethnic
Hungarians living there.
2019 Oct 30, Hungary's PM
Viktor Orban, after hosting a meeting with Russian President
Vladimir Putin, said that good relations with Russia are a necessity
because of his country's geographical location. Putin said that
Russia expects to complete construction of the TurkStream pipeline
to Turkey this year and build extensions to Bulgaria and Serbia the
2019 Nov 11, Hungary accepted a
penalty for poorly managing funds it receives from the EU that could
cost Budapest more than 500 billion forints ($1.65 billion) in
funding. Hungary agreed to a 10% reduction in the EU funds deemed by
the European Parliament's Budget Control Committee to have been
mismanaged in the current 2014-2020 EU budget period.
2019 Nov 18, The Hungarian
government signed a special agreement with an Orthodox Jewish group,
granting them a status in the country enjoyed only by a small number
2019 Dec 4, Hungary's foreign
minister said Budapest would block Ukraine's membership in NATO
until Kiev restored the rights that ethnic Hungarians had before a
language law curbed minorities' access to education in their mother
2019 Dec 6, In Hungary a
government spokesman confirmed that the government is seeking a
greater say in the operation of theaters that it partly funds. He
said a recent sexual harassment case at a Budapest theater made the
changes necessary as the government currently has no power to sack
the director of the theatre involved.