07 Mar 2018

Hungarian PM incites hate against Roma and migrants

In a Facebook video, Viktor Orbán compared the refugee crisis to the internal migration of the Roma community -- implying that both groups were a threat to Hungarian society.

Ivett Körösi
Ivett Körösi Nepszava, Hungary
Source: Nepszava
Hungarian PM incites hate against Roma and migrants - NewsMavens
Viktor Orbán. Wikimedia Commons

Why this story matters:

The PM was alluding to the fate of Roma in the town of Miskolc, who were evicted because of tensions with locals. His exact words were:

"The people of Miskolc know what migration is. There were times when masses came here from outside the city. You saw the consequences... and these were people who migrated from within the country."


While Hungary has almost no refugee population to speak of, it is home to hundreds of thousands of Roma, who live under the threat of racial attacks like those of 2008. By directly encouraging Hungarians to consider them a menace, Orbán has further endangered his country's most vulnerable social group.

race, politics, media

Details from the story:

  • "The people of Miskolc know what migration is. There were times when masses came here from outside the city. You saw the consequences... and these were people who migrated from within the country,” said Viktor Orbán, in a video recently uploaded to his Facebook page.
  • Although he did not specify who he was referring to, it is obvious that he meant the Roma that used to live in Miskolc. As a result of serious tensions in the city, many Roma families were evicted by local authorities.
  • Several opposition parties and well-known Roma condemned the words of the PM. Many called the statement an incitement against the Roma community.
  • Attila Hidvégi-B., editor-in-chief of RomNet, suggested that after the recent loss Fidesz suffered at the mayoral by-election of Hodmezovasarhely, Orbán realised that “his crusade against migrants and George Soros was not hateful enough.” 
  • Oszkar Lakatos, a member of the National Roma Self-Government, claimed that the ruling party is using Roma citizens. They expect them to vote for Fidesz in general election in return for “a kilogram of bread or a package of expired food”, and then turn on them and use them as scapegoats whenever convenient.
  • At the peak of the anti-immigration hysteria, there were several cases when citizens called the police, having seen a “foreign-looking person” walking on the street.
  • The general elections are scheduled for April 8, 2018.
inbox_large_illu Created with Sketch.
Tired of the news media’s prevailing male perspective? We are too.

Get our newsletters composed exclusively by female journalists from all over Europe.


Project #Femfacts co-financed by European Commission Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology as part of the Pilot Project – Media Literacy For All

The information and views set out on this website are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the European Union. Neither the European Union institutions and bodies nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein.

NewsMavens is a media start-up within Gazeta Wyborcza, Poland's largest liberal broadsheet published by Agora S.A. NewsMavens is currently financed by Gazeta Wyborcza and Google DNI Fund.
Is something happening in your country that Newsmavens should cover?
Zuzanna Ziomecka
Zuzanna Ziomecka EDITOR IN CHIEF
Lea Berriault-Jauvin
Lea Berriault Managing Editor
Jessica Sirotin
Jessica Sirotin EDITOR
Ada Petriczko
Ada Petriczko EDITOR
Gazeta Wyborcza, Agora SA Czerska 8/10 00-732, Warsaw Poland
The e-mail addresses provided above are not intended for recruitment purposes. Messages concerning recruitment will be deleted immediately. Your personal data provided as part of your correspondence with Zuzanna,Lea, Jessica and Ada will be processed for the purpose of resolving the issue you contacted us about. The data provided in your email is controlled by Agora S.A. with its registered office in Warsaw Czerska 8/10 Street (00-732). You can find more information about the processing and protection of your personal data at https://newsmavens.com/transparency-policy