More than 50 Countries Represented at Conference by Ambassadors and Political Leaders
Budapest, Hungary—More than 550 people from around the world, including Ambassadors representing more than 50 countries gathered today at the opening of "Jewish Life and Anti-Semitism in Contemporary Europe," a conference to address the alarming resurgence of anti-Semitism.
Representatives from Greece, Austria, Georgia, and Germany were among the participants. Israeli Minister of Finance Yair Lapid, and Hungarian Deputy Prime Minister Dr. Tibor Navracsics opened the two day conference in Budapest, Hungary.
“We are encouraged that many world leaders and policy makers have joined us today to discuss the important issue of anti-Semitism. We hope it will be the beginning of a greater dialogue aimed at solving this problem. Anti-Semitism is everyone’s issue, and we must come together to find a solution.” said Dr. Anna-Mária Bíró, Director of the Tom Lantos Institute.
“The conference today was not intended to be a stand-alone event. Our aim is to be the preeminent organization fighting anti-Semitism in Europe, and this conference is just part of a broader strategy for addressing the issues of anti-Semitism,” continued Dr. Bíró.
Katrina Lantos Swett, daughter of Congressman Tom Lantos, President of the Lantos Foundation, and Co-chair of the Executive Committee of the Tom Lantos Institute announced a Solidarity Sabbath scheduled for the Spring of 2014, which will bring world leaders together to stand in solidarity against anti-Semitism in their countries. “My father, Tom Lantos, a proud Hungarian- American once said “The veneer of civilization is paper thin. We are its guardians, and we can never rest” This important conference exemplifies the vigilance my father was speaking about and I know he would be proud to see the Institute that bears his name, taking the lead on these vital issues.
The Tom Lantos Institute
The Tom Lantos Institute is an independent human and minority rights organization with a particular focus on Jewish and Roma communities and other transnational minorities. This conference is part of the Institute’s work focusing on Jewish communities. The Institute was named after Tom Lantos, the Hungarian-born American political leader, and the only Holocaust survivor ever elected to the United States Congress. Throughout his political career Congressman Lantos was a global leader in the struggle to advance human rights. He was the Co-Founder of the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, and the Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.