Motion in House to commemorate Hungarian uprising

Green MP Keith Locke will today move a motion in Parliament to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian uprising.

The Hungarian Honorary Consul and members of the Hungarian community will be present in the gallery of the Chamber.

“The 1956 uprising, although crushed by Soviet troops, set the scene for the eventual elimination of Stalinism in Eastern Europe in 1989, weakened the Western Communist Parties, and stimulated the development of a ‘New Left’ attractive in the 1960s to students such as myself,” Mr Locke says.

“More than 1000 Hungarian refugees came to New Zealand after the suppression of the revolt, and they and their descendants have made a considerable contribution to this country.”

Mr Locke will also host a reception at the Beehive at 6pm tomorrow (Wednesday 25 October) for MPs and members of the Hungarian community.

The wording of the motion is included below.

Motion on the 50th anniversary of the Hungarian uprising to be moved by Green MP Keith Locke:

That this House

1) commends the Hungarian people as they mark the 50th anniversary of the October 1956 Revolution, which set the stage for the democratic changes which occurred in 1989 in Hungary and other Eastern European countries;

2) expresses its condolences to the people of Hungary for those who lost their lives fighting for the cause of Hungarian freedom and independence in 1956 as well as those individuals executed by the Soviet and Hungarian authorities in the five years following the Revolution, including Prime Minister Imre Nagy;

3) welcomes the achievement of democracy in Hungary in 1989, and the progress its people have made since then;

4) reaffirms the friendship and cooperative relations between governments of Hungary and New Zealand, and between the Hungarian and New Zealand people;

5) notes that over one thousand Hungarian refugees came to New Zealand after the Revolution was crushed by Soviet forces;

6) recognises the significant contribution of the Hungarian community to the progress of New Zealand over the last 50 years;

7) asks the Speaker to convey this motion to the Speaker of the Hungarian Parliament.