The Hungarian government may build another school in Iraq, the Minister of Human Capacities announced on Friday in Budapest at the year-end ceremony held for persecuted young Christians studying in Hungary as scholarship holders.

Zoltán Balog said Prime Minister Viktor Orbán proposed that the construction of another school in Iraq should be among the first decisions of the new government to be formed shortly.

According to the Minister, this indicates that the government wishes to continue to support persecuted Christians, and continues to show solidarity with these communities.

DownloadPhoto: Gyula Bartos

Mr Balog told the 67 scholarship holders that their invitation to Hungary had a threefold purpose. On the one hand, to enable them to acquire competitive skills and a degree; secondly, to meet European Christian communities as Europe is seen increasingly as a continent that it is no longer Christian.

The Minister highlighted during his trip to Jordan, Christians fleeing from Syria told him they do not dare return to their homes and would move to America, Canada or Australia, but not to Europe because also in Europe they would have cause to be afraid of Islam. In their view, in European refugee camps Christian refugees equally have reason to be scared of the Islamic majority, and they believe that in Europe Christians are not protected.

“We would like you to have a good time in Hungary as Christians”, the Minister said.

DownloadPhoto: Gyula Bartos

The third purpose of the scholarship programme is for young people to take back home Hungary’s message that “we have not forgotten about them, we need them”, and to preserve their faith.

Mr Balog pointed out that as part of the scholarship programme next year two hundred young people will be able to study in Hungary; some 2,500 young people submitted applications to participate in the programme.

The purpose of the scholarship programme is to enable young people from the Middle East upon their return home in regions affected by armed conflicts to contribute to the reorganisation of their communities in possession of the skills they acquire in Hungary.

DownloadPhoto: Gyula Bartos

The scholarship holders came from Egypt, Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Nigeria and Israel. In the 2017-2018 academic year they attended programmes at the Budapest University of Technology and Economics, the University of Debrecen, the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, the University of Miskolc, the Pázmány Péter Catholic University and the University of Pécs.

(Ministry of Human Capacities/MTI)