The Jewish Community Roundtable convened in Budapest to discuss issues related to the Jewish community on Wednesday.
The roundtable held its 11th meeting since its founding in 2012, the state secretary of the prime minister’s office, Csaba Latorcai told the press. The meeting was chaired by government office chief János Lázár. Yosef Amrani, Israel’s ambassador to Hungary, who had taken his post in November, attended the roundtable for the first time, Latorcai said.
As part of its agenda as presiding country in the Visegrad Four (V4) group from June 19, Hungary is launching a reconstruction programme for Jewish cemeteries, Latorcai said. In most Jewish cemeteries, reconstruction underlies strict religious regulation, which the government vows to observe, Latorcai said.
The state secretary commemorated the anniversary of the law declaring equal rights for the Jewish community in Hungary in 1867, and said that events for its celebration were being discussed with the roundtable.
András Heisler, president of the Federation of Hungarian Jewish Communities (Mazsihisz), welcomed the dialogue the roundtable facilitates. He said Amrani “introduced himself” to the Hungarian Jewish community and talked of his plans as ambassador. Heisler also said that Mazsihisz had called on the Hungarian government to explore the possibility of acknowledging Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
In response to Heisler’s suggestion, Latorcai said that the Hungarian government stands by Israel but each individual issue needs to be considered separately.