Viktor Orbán to visit Temesvár for the revolution’s 30th anniversary

The Hungarian National Council of Transylvania/Erdélyi Magyar Nemzeti Tanács (EMNT) has organized a multiple-day-long program, between December 12-16, on the occasion of the anniversary of the revolution started 30 years ago in Temesvár/Timişoara. The event’s aim is to make sure that the roles of Temesvár and László Tőkés are never erased from the revolution’s history. Prime Minister of Hungary Viktor Orbán will also visit Temesvár during the events to participate in the commemorations.

The main organizer of the event, Tibor T. Toró, and vice-president of EMNT Zsolt Kása said at their press conference on Monday that they would like to bring the events of the political changeover closer to the younger generations.

“Anniversaries are always good occasions to recall life-changing events. Our goal is to bring the revolution closer to the younger generations and to draw attention to how important of a role Temesvár itself and the “spark man” of the revolution, László Tőkés, played in these events. Normally this would be obvious for everybody. But now we still feel the necessity to make it clear for everybody, that 30 years ago the movements started here in Temesvár, and that there was a man who dared to stand up against the dictatorship,” said Tibor T. Toró. The memorial programs will be held between December 12-16 at six different locations.

Eviction of László Tőkés
Human chain on December 15, 1989, in Temesvár trying to prevent officials from evicting László Tőkés from his church.

Programs will start on December 12 at 4:00 p.m. in the downtown Reform Church of Temesvár, where the memorial tablet of Ernő Újvárossy – the first martyr of the revolution – will be inaugurated. On December 13, the “Road to Freedom” international scientific conference will be held in the hall of the Temesvár University of Technology’s library, while on the following day – Saturday, December 14 – a festive gala evening will be organized in the Temesvár Regional Chamber of Commerce’ event hall. The event’s guest of honor, Prime Minister of Hungary Viktor Orbán, will also attend.

On Sunday, December 15, László Tőkés and the retired Hungarian Reformed bishop from Felvidék (southern part of Slovakia with a significant Hungarian population), Géza Erdélyi, will preach in the downtown Reform Church of Temesvár, followed by a roundtable discussion on the importance of the Tőkés family in the 1989 resistance. As the highlight of the day, at 6:00 p.m., the New Millennium Reformed Center’s church will be inaugurated.

On December 16, first an ecumenical service will be held in the downtown Reform Church of Temesvár at 6:00 p.m., then at the same place from 7:00 p.m., as the closing event of the program series, participants will replay the legendary Temesvár human chain, which 30 years ago tried to prevent officials from evicting László Tőkés from his church – a resistance that basically resulted in the revolution in Romania.


Title image: László Tőkés (on the left) and Viktor Orbán (on the right) in the Hungarian Parliament on February 18, 2014, in front of a Szekler and a Hungarian flag. (Photo: MTI/Károly Árvai)

Author: Attila Szoó