Teens charged in beating of Budapest Jew


BUDAPEST (JTA) – Police charged two men in the assault of a Jewish man in the old Ghetto district of the Hungarian capital.

A third man was also arrested Wednesday, as investigations into last summer’s assault in Budapest continue.

After the incident, Prime Minister Gordon Bajnai called on the police to be more vigilant against anti-Semitic attacks. In Hungary, violence targeting individuals for reason of their assumed racial, religious or national origins is punishable by up to five years’ imprisonment.

The attack against an Orthodox Jewish man took place near the famous Dohány Street synagogue at dawn on June 30. It was carried out by three hooded assailants who allegedly asked the victim first whether he was Jewish. The victim, 27, suffered light injuries from several kicks and punches.

Both men charged by the police are in their late teens.

Chief Rabbi Somló Köves of the United Jewish-Hungarian Religious Community commented after the assault that public safety in the capital had been seriously undermined by the current upsurge of neo-Nazi agitation. Both the ruling Socialist government and the dominant conservative Fidesz parliamentary opposition have condemned the incident.

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