Riots in Hungary as PM 'lies'

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

The Hungarian parliament in Budapest.

More than 150 people were injured when protestors clashed with Hungarian police in the capital Budapest on Tuesday. The protestors were demanding the resignation of the Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsany after a videotape in which the PM tells MPs that the government "lied throughout the last year-and-a-half, two years..." and that there were no "significant government measure we can be proud of" came to light on Sunday.

The tape recorded a meeting held a few weeks after the April elections and the PM, in a speech riddled with obscenities says that tough economic measures are needed but admits lying to voters during the elections. The revelations have lead to protests in the capital and several other cities and more are planned, calling on the PM to resign. The Prime Minister has announced that he has no plans to resign and has vowed to continue his budget reforms. On Monday, he was backed by a unanimous vote by Socialist MPs.

The Hungarian President, Laszlo Solyom has said that the revelations have created a "moral crisis" and opposition parties have demanded his resignation, and the centre-right Fidesz party said that they plan to boycott Parliament over the affair.

Some protestors have stormed buildings and set cars alight. On Tuesday, trouble began when a group of protestors, who were trying to hand in a petition, and some broke into the state television building. Police used tear gas and water cannons to quell the protests. About 150 people were reported injured, including 102 police officers.