Memorial Day for the Victims of the Holocaust in Hungary Date in the current year: April 16, 2024

Memorial Day for the Victims of the Holocaust in Hungary Memorial Day for the Victims of the Holocaust (A holokauszt áldozatainak emléknapja) is observed on April 16 every year. On this day in 1944, the Jews of Subcarpathia were rounded up and forced into ghettos and then extermination camps.

In the 1930s, Hungarian leaders chose to align themselves with the fascist governments of Italy and Germany. No wonder that starting in 1938, Hungarian Regent Miklós Horthy passed a series of anti-Jewish measures resembling Germany’s Nuremberg Laws. During World War II, Hungarian Jews were used as forced laborers to clean up minefields, build airports and repair bombed railroads. Horthy, however, refused to allow the deportation of Hungarian Jews to extermination camps.

The situation changed in 1944, when German troops occupied Hungary in response to Horthy’s contacts with the Allies in hopes of negotiating a surrender. A few days after the occupation, Hungarian Jews were forced into ghettos. The Ministry of Interior in the Nazi-controlled Hungarian government ordered the deportation of Jews to extermination camps. On April 16, 1944, the deportation of Jews from Subcarpathia began (today part of Ukraine, Subcarpathia was occupied by Hungary from 1939 to 1944). An estimated 70% of Hungarian Jews did not survive the Holocaust.

Holocaust Remembrance Day was officially established by the government of Hungary in 2000 and was observed for the first time on April 16, 2001. Commemorations are mostly held in high schools.

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Memorial Day for the Victims of the Holocaust in Hungary, Holocaust Remembrance Day, holidays in Hungary, Holocaust in Hungary