On Friday, May 5, 2017, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó called on First Vice-President of the European Commission Frans Timmermans to immediately resign his post following inappropriate and unfounded accusations of anti-Semitism aimed at the Hungarian Government and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.

Speaking at a press conference in Budapest, Szijjártó strongly rebuffed allegations by Commissioner Timmermans’ of Hungarian anti-Semitism, calling such accusations unfair and unacceptable.

In an interview in the German newspaper Die Zeit, European Commission Vice-President Frans Timmermans said that Hungarian Prime Minister was in his view “clearly anti-Semitic” in calling George Soros a financial speculator in the European Parliament last week.

The Foreign Minister stated that Frans Timmermans’ remarks were an extreme insult to Hungary, “and if an EU official gravely insults a Member State on such an issue, then he can have no choice but to resign from office”.

Szijjártó added that while the Hungarian Government undoubtedly has major issues with George Soros, who clearly seeks to remove the current, democratically-elected Hungarian government from power, “these disputes have absolutely nothing to do with George Soros’s origins or religion.”

Szijjártó emphasized that Hungary “has done more than anyone in Europe to combat anti-Semitism.”

“We introduced the National Memorial Day for the Victims of the Holocaust, we have renovated synagogues not just in Hungary, but also in neighboring countries, and we have made Holocaust denial a punishable offense according to the new Penal Code. Hungary’s new Constitution, which has been placed on new foundations, guarantees the security of Hungarian Jews as part of the Hungarian nation, and the Hungarian Jewish Community can always count on the respect, friendship and protection of the Hungarian Government,” said Szijjártó, who also added that “we have introduced a policy of zero tolerance with regard to anti-Semitism.”