woman views a wall at the Holocaust Memorial
Center in Budapest that is inscribed with the
names of 60,000 of Hungary's approximately
victims of the Holocaust.
First Holocaust Museum Opens
reported by The Associated Press
(AP) - Vowing to keep alive the memory of Hungary's
600,000 Holocaust victims, government leaders and the
Israeli president on Thursday inaugurated this country's
first Holocaust museum.
Memorial Center, which incorporates an old synagogue,
exhibit halls and documentation archives, was opened on
the eve of the 60th anniversary of the start of the
Holocaust in Hungary amid tight security.
authorities started rounding up Jews in the countryside
on April 16, 1944, ahead of their deportation to
is no excuse, no explanation, only
"It was a heinous
crime that was committed by Hungarian people against
Hungarian people," Prime Minister Peter Medgyessy said at
the inauguration. "There is no excuse, no explanation,
Hungarian police arrested a Hungarian citizen of
Palestinian origin who allegedly planned to a bomb attack
on an unidentified Jewish museum in Budapest. The arrest
was made as Israeli President Moshe Katsav began a
three-day visit to Hungary, but police ruled out any
connection between the plot the visit.
the Auschwitz Album, a collection of 235 photographs
mostly of Hungarian Jews taken at the Auschwitz
concentration camp in 1944, to Culture Minister Istvan
Hiller. Katsav warned in a speech that anti-Semitism
could rise as Holocaust survivors die.
"That is why this
museum is so important," Katsav said. "It is a symbol ...
of those Hungarians who died as Jews."
Hungarian leaders for creating the museum, while
recalling that many Hungarians took part in the brutal
humiliation and murder of Jews.
donated $500,000 to the memorial center, was represented
by Foreign Minister Nicolas Sarkozy, who is of Hungarian
included Hungarian-born U.S. Rep. Tom Lantos from
California, and leading Hungarian politicians, including
President Ferenc Madl.
coinciding with the Budapest opening were held at the
Holocaust Museum in Washington, the site at the former
Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland and at the Yad
Some 60,000 names
have already been inscribed on the inside face of the
wall surrounding the museum. Eventually, the names of all
600,000 victims of the Holocaust in Hungary will be
added, officials said.
which ended in Hungary in 1990, little discussion of the
Holocaust was allowed.
The memorial center
is the fifth state-funded Holocaust museum in the world,
after others in Jerusalem, London, Berlin and