White Powder Mailed to Hungarian Jewish Leader, Substance Deemed Harmless

Hundreds To Arrive in Budapest for Rabbinical Conference

No to Hatred: Hungary has been hit by a rising tide of anti-Semitism.
Getty Images
No to Hatred: Hungary has been hit by a rising tide of anti-Semitism.

By JTA

Published March 16, 2014.
  • Print
  • Share Share

An envelope containing white powder sent to a representative of Hungary’s Jewish communities did not contain any dangerous materials.

The envelope was mailed earlier this week to Andras Heisler, president of the Mazsihisz federation of Hungarian Jewish communities, according to a report Wednesday by the ATV station.

Separately, police in Tatabanya, which is approximately 30 miles west of Budapest, reported that swastikas and anti-Semitic slogans were daubed on several tombstones in the city’s Jewish cemetery. No suspects have been apprehended, the EFE news agency reported Friday.

On March 24, hundreds of European rabbis are scheduled to convene in Budapest for the biannual conference of the Rabbinical Center of Europe.

“The choice of Hungary as the host country for the event is designed to demonstrate to the Hungarian authorities the common concerns of European Jewry regarding the situation of the Hungarian Jewish community, as well as sending out a message of solidarity with the Hungarian Jewish community, and European Jewry as a whole,” the center’s director, Rabbi Menachem Margolin, wrote in a statement.

Last year, Ira Forman, the U.S. State Department’s envoy for combating anti-Semitism, said Hungary’s government should do more to combat the phenomenon.

Jobbik, a far-right party with a history of anti-Semitism, is the third largest party in Hungary with 43 of the 386 seats in Parliament.

Earlier this year, the Mazsihisz organization and other Jewish groups said they would not attend government-led commemorations on the 70th anniversary of Hungary’s occupation by the Nazis because the government was obfuscating the role played by Hungarians in the murder of Hungarian Jews.

The Rabbinical Center of Europe’s conference is not connected to the commemoration plans, a spokesman for the center told JTA on Sunday.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • The Jewish bachelorette has spoken.
  • "When it comes to Brenda Turtle, I ask you: What do you expect of a woman repressed all her life who suddenly finds herself free to explore? We can sit and pass judgment, especially when many of us just simply “got over” own sexual repression. But we are obliged to at least acknowledge that this problem is very, very real, and that complete gender segregation breeds sexual repression and unhealthy attitudes toward female sexuality."
  • "Everybody is proud of the resistance. No matter how many people, including myself, disapprove of or even hate Hamas and its ideology, every single person in Gaza is proud of the resistance." Part 2 of Walid Abuzaid's on-the-ground account of life in #Gaza:
  • After years in storage, Toronto’s iconic red-and-white "Sam the Record Man" sign, complete with spinning discs, will return to public view near its original downtown perch. The sign came to symbolize one of Canada’s most storied and successful Jewish family businesses.
  • Is $4,000 too much to ask for a non-member to be buried in a synagogue cemetery?
  • "Let’s not fall into the simplistic us/them dichotomy of 'we were just minding our business when they started firing rockets at us.' We were not just minding our business. We were building settlements, manning checkpoints, and filling jails." What do you think?
  • PHOTOS: 10,000 Israel supporters gathered for a solidarity rally near the United Nations in New York yesterday.
  • Step into the Iron Dome with Tuvia Tenenbom.
  • What do you think of Wonder Woman's new look?
  • "She said that Ruven Barkan, a Conservative rabbi, came into her classroom, closed the door and turned out the lights. He asked the class of fourth graders to lie on the floor and relax their bodies. Then, he asked them to pray for abused children." Read Paul Berger's compelling story about a #Savannah community in turmoil:
  • “Everything around me turns orange, then a second of silence, then a bomb goes off!" First installment of Walid Abuzaid’s account of the war in #Gaza:
  • Is boredom un-Jewish?
  • Let's face it: there's really only one Katz's Delicatessen.
  • "Dear Diaspora Jews, I’m sorry to break it to you, but you can’t have it both ways. You can’t insist that every Jew is intrinsically part of the Israeli state and that Jews are also intrinsically separate from, and therefore not responsible for, the actions of the Israeli state." Do you agree?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.