Budapest (MTI) – The government will launch a “social consultation” concerning the form and location of a monument to hundreds of thousands of Hungarians deported to Soviet forced labour camps during and after WW2, the human resources minister said on Thursday.
After a session of the Gulag Memorial Committee, Zoltan Balog said the government had been advised by civil groups to erect the monument in central Budapest’s Szabadsag Square, where a Soviet liberation obelisk has stood for the past 70 years.
Regarding 1945 as a “closure of the war and the advent of a wonderful era of peace” is a misconception, the minister said. “The unjust, inhumane and terrible war was followed by retaliation in which truth was not the most important consideration,” he said.
Balog also announced that the government would distribute a total 1.4 billion forints (EUR 4.5m) among civil groups to maintain monuments, organise conferences, publish scientific studies and document the recollections of survivors.