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Hungary Far Right Targets ‘Israeli’ Lawmaker

A lawmaker for Hungary’s ultra-nationalist Jobbik party has demanded a fellow lawmaker resign because she has Israeli citizenship.

Elod Novak said during a news conference Nov. 29 that Katalin Ertsey of the opposition LMP Party should step down because she had an Israeli passport in addition to her Hungarian nationality.

Index, a Hungarian news portal, later quoted him as saying that, “Israel has more deputies in the Hungarian parliament than they have in the Israeli Knesset.” He added this caused the Hungarian parliament to make “favorable” decisions toward Israel.

The Anti-Defamation League has called Jobbik an “overtly anti-Semitic party.”

Novak’s comments came in the wake of remarks by fellow Jobbik lawmaker, Marton Gyongyosi, who had proposed drawing up a list of people in the country “to see how many are of Jewish origin and present a certain national security risk to Hungary” during a parliamentary debate on Nov. 26 on Israel’s recent conflict with Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Gyongyosi later apologised to his “Jewish compatriots,” saying he meant only those with dual Hungarian-Israeli citizenship.

Following this, Novak sent an email to all deputies Nov. 28 requesting they make any dual citizenship public, in the public interest.

AFP quoted Attila Peterfalvi, president of the National Data Protection and Freedom of Information Authority, as saying a lawmaker’s dual citizenship is in the public domain but not what their other nationality is. Having to declare that would be a “violation of human dignity,” he said.

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