Hungary’s decision makers view minorities as part of the country’s culture and are ready to protect them, Foreign Minister Janos Martonyi told a conference on Raoul Wallenberg, a former Swedish diplomat who rescued thousands of Jews during WW2, on Thursday.
Martonyi said there were extremist views in Hungary but the majority public opinion was able to suppress them. Hatred against minorities can be frequently experienced throughout the world and Europe even today but democracies must work together to face this challenge, he added.
Thorbjorn Jagland, Secretary-General of the Council of Europe, said that xenophobia and exclusion may have increased in Europe because some “reacted wrongly” to increased unemployment and recession caused by the economic crisis.
Nobody can feel safe in a country where human rights are not enjoyed equally by all citizens and everyone must be responsible and dedicated to focusing on the values represented by human rights, he said.
State secretary of the Swedish foreign ministry Frank Belfrage said everyone must find a way in their local community to fight against hatred.