Hungary's Pardon Of Far-Right Terrorist Before Pope Francis' Visit Sparks Outrage
Hungary's President Katalin Novák has granted a pardon to far-right extremist György Budaházy, who was sentenced for terrorism-related crimes.
Hungary's pardon of far-right terrorist was granted just days before Pope Francis' visit to Hungary, sparking outrage among the country's citizens, as well as international condemnation.
György Budaházy is a Hungarian far-right extremist who was convicted of leading a terrorist organization that carried out numerous attacks in Hungary between 2006 and 2009.
These attacks targeted Roma communities, left-wing politicians, and other minority groups. The attacks included bombings, arson, and other acts of violence.
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Budaházy was also convicted of inciting hatred against Jews, Roma, and other minorities, as well as of illegally possessing weapons and explosives.
The decision by Hungary's President to grant a pardon to Budaházy has been widely criticized as an attempt to pander to Hungary's far-right extremist elements ahead of Pope Francis' visit to the country.
The week of the papal visit is a special occasion for the head of state to exercise her power of pardon.- Hungary's President
The timing of the pardon has led to speculation that it was politically motivated, with critics accusing Hungary's government of trying to appeal to far-right voters.
The pardon has also raised concerns about the rule of law in Hungary, with many questioning the message that the country is sending to its citizens and to the international community by pardoning a convicted terrorist.
Convicted terrorist pardoned in Hungary on eve of Pope’s visit
The decision to pardon Budaházy has been met with widespread condemnation from international human rights groups and political leaders. The European Union has called on Hungary to uphold the rule of law and to ensure that justice is served.
The United States has also expressed concern over the decision, with the State Department issuing a statement that called on Hungary to "uphold its democratic values and the rule of law."
On Saturday morning, thousands gathered in and around the St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church in central Budapest, where Francis met with refugees, many of whom were from Ukraine, and appealed to the value of compassion while hearing accounts from refugees.
The decision by Hungary's President to pardon György Budaházy, a convicted far-right extremist, just days before Pope Francis' visit to the country has sparked outrage and condemnation from both within Hungary and the international community.
The timing of the pardon has raised concerns about the motives behind the decision, with many questioning whether it was politically motivated.
The move has also highlighted concerns about the rule of law in Hungary and the message that the country is sending to its citizens and to the world.