Speech by János Áder at the National Memorial Site in the Rákoskeresztúr Cemetery on the Memorial Day to mark the 25th anniversary of the reburial of Imre Nagy and his fellow martyrs, as well as the 25th anniversary of the regime change in Hungary
Honourable commemorating crowd,
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen,
Millions of Hungarians focused their attention to the Heroes’ Square on 16th June 1989. Today we know already that history did prove the expectations of our freedom loving nation at the time. This day was a turning point pointing way beyond itself in significance for the millions of Hungarians wanting to be liberated from the lies and the suffocating embrace of the Communist system.
25 years ago today, the citizens of Hungary paid the last honours to the martyrs and heroes of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution. Among them to Imre Nagy, the Prime Minister of our country, who was executed on 16th June 1958.
News of the funeral ceremony attracted masses of people to the Heroes’ Square in Budapest. Millions of people followed the reports about the event with the breaths held back. Deep in their souls everybody felt that Hungary had arrived at a historical turning point. This was the subject of discussion in every family; this is what people talked about in the streets and at work. The stifling tension of anticipation was almost palpable in the air in the country.
This anticipation was very much understandable. 33 years had to pass after the revolution was crushed in blood for our political nation to publicly remember its revolution and freedom fight. 1956 shook the Western world and was the first to rock the Soviet empire. 33 years had to pass for the first public salute to heroes and martyrs. 33 years had to pass before murderers had to publicly face their victims. For those pursuing these vicious policies to be openly confronted with their villainy.