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  • Originally published 06/21/2013

    Gyula Horn, Helped Part Iron Curtain, Dies at 80

    Gyula Horn, a former leader of Hungary who in 1989 literally ripped a hole in the Iron Curtain, helping to set off months of tumultuous change in which Communist governments in Eastern Europe fell one after the other, died Wednesday in Budapest. He was 80.The Hungarian government announced the death. He had been hospitalized since 2007 with what was reported to be a brain malfunction.Mr. Horn’s life encompassed much of the history of 20th-century Hungary. His father, a Communist, was executed by the Nazis occupying Hungary in 1944. Gyula (pronounced JOO-la) also became a hard-line Communist, serving in militia units that hunted down government opponents during their revolt in 1956. The rebels lynched his brother, also a Communist.As foreign minister, as Moscow’s grip on Eastern Europe slipped, Mr. Horn proved nimble as a newly minted, nonideological, pragmatic reformer in helping to lead Hungary away from Communism. Elected prime minister as a Socialist in 1994, he angered Hungarians by cutting social programs to stanch raging inflation....

  • Originally published 06/18/2013

    Hungarian indicted for Nazi-era war crimes

    BUDAPEST, Hungary — Hungarian prosecutors indicted a 98-year-old former police officer Tuesday for abusing Jews and assisting in their deportation to Nazi death camps during World War II.They said Laszlo 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.He also allegedly refused to allow ventilation holes to be cut into the walls of a railcar crammed with 80 Jews being deported.With his actions, Csatary "willfully assisted in the unlawful execution and torture of the Jews deported from (Kosice) to concentration camps in territories occupied by the Germans," the prosecution said in a statement....

  • Originally published 05/09/2013

    German warning to Hungary over rise of anti-Semitism

    Guido Westerwelle today (MON) added Germany's voice to mounting concerns over extreme nationalism in Hungary and EU criticism that Prime Minister Viktor Orban's strong government is eroding the checks and balances common to European democracies."We have questions and we have some doubts," Mr Westerwelle told Bild newspaper before addressing a meeting of the World Jewish Congress in Budapest."The European Commission and the Council of Europe have not concealed their criticism of the Hungarian government. It must now be spoken about openly and honestly."...

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