Banffy Defends Restriction of Jewish Admissions

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Because of the “reduced absorbing capacity of the present Hugary”, the Government is compelled to limit the total number of students in the universities and to especially restrict Jewish admissions, declares Count Banffy, the Hungarian Foreign Minister, in a letter made public today to Lucien Wolfe, representative of the Joint Foreign Committee of British Jewry. The letter is a reply to protests filed by the committee with the Hungarian Government and the League of Nations against mistreatment and discrimination of Jews in Hungary.

“There can be no question of Hungary departing in any way from either the letter or the spirit of the minority section of the Trianon Treaty”, Count Banffy asserts. “Hungary will be faithful to the internal obligations already given to the League of Nations and fortified with effective guarantees.

“Concerning the complaint of isecurity of Jewish life and liberty, I wish to state that my country has experienced the miseries of the disastrous war, of two revolutions and of a foreign invasion. Passions have thus been stirred up and undoubtedly deplorable events have happened. Since the last election, however, there has been inaugurated a new era of consolidation. The present Government entertains liberal views regarding the religious and racial questions. It has an overhelming majority in Parliament, where only one member throughout the couree of the last Assembly made a violent attack upon Jews. The Government’s determination to deal firmly with incitements to violence has been shown by the trials of persons accused of anti-Semitic crime.

“Regarding the admission of Jewish students to the Universities, it is the Governments intention not to invade any article of the Treaty of Trianon, but assures their proper fulfillment under the now conditions.

The limiting of the total number of students is necessary because of the reduced absorbing capacity of the present Hungary. If special measures had not been taken, the just representation of all religions, races and minorities would suffer.

“The numerical proportion of Jewish students, who have always largely exceeded the proportion of the general student population, inflicts only a minimum of hardship. This law, which is not the work of the present Government, will be administered in accordance with the foregoing statement, and I am confident the Hungarian Jews will not suffer by its application”.

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