Washington, DC, September 28 (MTI) – Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó gave a talk about Hungary’s 1956 anti-Soviet uprising at the National Press Club in Washington, DC, on Tuesday evening local time.
“Hungary is the home of freedom and freedom fighters,” he said, arguing that 1956 was a milestone in Hungarian history because it demonstrated that dictatorship had failed to take root in Hungary. And it presaged that Hungarians would rise against anyone who put their freedom at stake, he said to a packed room in one of the club’s restaurants, which served Hungarian wines with its dinner.
Szijjártó’s talk marked the start of a series of events in Washington, DC, dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the uprising.
Szijjártó said he was speaking on behalf of a proud nation that is proud of its culture, more than thousand-year history and Christianity.
He noted that Hungary had been promised help by foreign powers in 1956 but it never arrived.
“The freedom fight was crushed and revenge was brutal, but the example of the heroes served as encouragement even until 1990,” he said.
Szijjártó said the greatest lesson learned from 1956 was that “we always have to fight for our sovereignty and freedom for ourselves”.
Only the Hungarians can decide about their own future, he added.
“We love our country the way it is, just like the Americans love their country the way it is. And we will never allow anyone to change our home country,” he said.
He added that it is not in Hungary’s habit to criticise others; it respects others but expects respect from them, too.
Szijjártó expressed thanks to the US for giving a home to many Hungarians who were forced to flee in 1956. In addition to Hungary, the US, too can be proud of 1956 Hungarians who became faithful and active citizens of their new home, he said.