Krakow, December 9 (MTI) – A new period of prosperity is starting in central Europe and young people will have to find new ways to nurture Hungarian-Polish friendship, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told a 1956 celebratory event in Krakow.
“We know how to remain friends in times of suffering, but we are now preparing for very different times,” Orbán told the inauguration ceremony of a memorial plaque paying tribute to protests organised by the Revolutionary Committee of University Students in 1956 and help offered to Hungarians.
Orbán said the friendship between Hungarians and Poles does not mean that the two peoples are not aware of each other’s faults. But they are willing to overlook them and “overrate” each other’s strong points, the prime minister said. Some might call this romanticism, Orbán said, adding, however, that it is important that “the romantic Hungarian-Polish friendship remain a part of our lives”.
Orbán noted Polish President Andzej Duda’s visit to Budapest for the state commemorations of the 1956 anti-Soviet uprising, which he called a “great honour” for Hungarians.
Referring to the blood donations that Poland offered to Hungary after the crushing of the revolution, he said the blood of Hungarians and Poles had mixed together thanks to the Poles. And ever since 1956, Hungarians have considered the Poles not only as friends but also as brothers.
Orbán said the Hungarian government would establish joint scholarships with the Polish government, which would be open to application for Polish university students. The two governments are also preparing to set up cultural foundations aimed at preserving Poland and Hungary’s friendship among young people, too.
Krakow Mayor Jacek Majchrowski told the same event that when Hungary’s 1956 revolution broke out, Hungarians were ready to express their support for Poland’s Poznan uprising, but they “made it farther” with their own demands than Poles did. But after the revolution they faced widespread bloodshed and a prolonged era of oppression, he added.
He noted that Poles in Krakow had sent a significant amount of aid to Hungary, adding that the memorial plaque unveiled today would help give the people of Krakow and tourists there a better understanding of the shared history of the Hungarian and Polish people.
After the inauguration ceremony, Orbán met the leader of Poland’s ruling Law and Justice party, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, with whom he laid a wreath at the tomb of former Polish President Lech Kaczynski and his wife in the Wawel cathedral. Lech Kaczynski and his wife were killed in a plane crash in Smolensk, Russia, in April 2010.