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Hungarian Leader Say Jews Will Be Permitted to Emigrate to Israel

September 18, 1956
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The Communist Party of Hungary “no longer considers World Zionism as an agent of American imperialism, and no longer sees Zionism as a hostile trend against the State,” Oscar Beten, a member of the Hungarian party executive committee, was quoted here today as stating.

The statement initialed by Beten, was reported in the newspaper Haaretz by its Bucharest correspondent, Amon Illon, who quoted Mr. Beten as declaring that Zionism is now looked upon in Hungary only as “a rival trend from the ideological viewpoint.” The Hungarian Communist leader is reported to have admitted that Zionists had been arrested and persecuted in Hungary and to have stated that “these were regretful mistakes of the Stalinist era, and will not recur.” All have been released he said.

Individual Zionists may live in Hungary peacefully and without prejudice or discrimination. Mr. Beten is reported to have promised. However, he objected to “Zionist propaganda” among Hungarian Jews on the grounds that the latter “enjoy full equality, and Zionist propaganda may harm the free Jewish community.”

Hungarian Jews who wish to emigrate to Israel will be permitted to do so, Mr. Beten is reported to have assured the correspondent. “No difficulties,” he said, “will be encountered by such prospective emigres. They will be allowed to leave on humanitarian grounds in cases where there is no doubt that emigration will result in reuniting families, especially in the case of older people who want to join their children in Israel.”

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