Hungary. On March 12, Hungary joined the NATO military
alliance together with Poland and the Czech Republic. Almost
two weeks later, NATO launched bombing of Yugoslavia to
force its army to leave Kosovo. As the only NATO country
with a border with Yugoslavia, Hungary was placed in a very
sensitive situation. Prime Minister Viktor Orban explained
that the country was not prepared to participate in any
ground operation led by NATO in Yugoslavia. Nor was it
intended to allow such an attack to originate in Hungarian
territory. However, NATO's plan to use Hungarian airspace
and its airports was allowed. But according to surveys, a
clear majority of Hungarians were against this. There was
also widespread concern that the more than 300,000 strong
Hungarian minority in the North Yugoslav province of
Vojvodina would be hit by NATO bombs. Several of the
Hungarians there fled to Hungary in fear of Serbian
reprisals following NATO's attack. Hungary also ended in
diplomatic conflict with the Russian Federation after a
Russian convoy with humanitarian aid to Serbia was stopped
by Hungarian border guards who refused to pass through
tankers with oil. For this, Hungary received praise from
NATO for showing "absolute loyalty".
Countryaah official website, the war also created domestic political problems when the
second leader of one of the coalition's parties declared
that it was conceivable that Vojvodina would become an
independent state. The other government rushed to dismiss
the claim of fear that it might interfere with NATO's
strategy. The opposition, for its part, said that the
statement risked provoking attacks on ethnic Hungarians in
Vojvodina and other neighboring countries.
The frosty relations between Hungary and Slovakia thawed
somewhat through an agreement in September, when the two
countries decided to jointly rebuild a bridge across the
Danube border that has been razed since the Second World
At the end of the year, the opposition was very critical
of the center-right government's plans to have, on New
Year's Day 2000, reclaim an old royal crown as a symbol of
the Hungarian state and move it from a museum to parliament.
The Crown has belonged to King Stefan I, Hungary's national
saint. The critics said that the proposal was reminiscent of
a "crown cult" that existed during World War II's
Hitler-allied Hungarian regime.
Hungary - Budapest
Buʹdapest, capital of Hungary; 1. 8 million residents (2017). Budapest is
located on both sides of the Danube River, 30 km south of the Danube Curve at
the point where the river cuts through the Hungarian middle mountains.
The western side, Buda, lies on the outskirts of this mountain country, while
the eastern side, Pest, is located on a foothill to the Hungarian plain
(Danube-Tisza Plateau). Budapest is the country's political, administrative,
industrial and commercial center.
The contrasts between the mountain landscape in the west (Buda) and the large
plain in the east (Pest) characterize Budapest's cityscape. The Buda side is
dominated by Gellért Mountain and Slottsberget with the medieval castle,
redesigned during the 19th century, which now houses museums and libraries. The
Matthias Church, built in 1255–69, was restored in 1874–96 by Frigyes Schulek,
who also designed the monumental Fishery Bastion (1900–02). Remains of the old
small town remain in the oldest part of the city, Óbuda.
Budapest's administrative and commercial center is located on the Pests side.
The magnificent New Gothic Parliament Building (1885-1904) by Imre Steindl and
the Academy of Sciences (1862-65) by Friedrich Stüler are a couple of the city's
major public building monuments. Significant classicist buildings are the
National Museum (1837–46) by Mihály Pollák and St. Stephen's Basilica (begun in
1851) by József Hild and Miklós Ybl and the opera (1875–84) by Ybl. Of the
buildings in the national romantic style can be mentioned the Museum of Art
Industry (1893–96) and Postsparbanken (1900), both by Ödön Lechner.
The most characteristic of Pestsidan's cityscape are the massive apartment
building areas, predominantly of 19th-century buildings in a uniform style.
Since 1989, several large office buildings have been erected along the outer
ring. The industrial belt surrounds the city on all sides except to the west.
During the 1950s and 1960s, the severely war-damaged district of Slottsberget
became the subject of extensive restoration. several interesting examples of the
insertion of new buildings in the old environment.
The two city halves of Buda and Pest are joined by several magnificent
bridges, including the Chain Bridge (the oldest), Elizabeth's Bridge and
Margaret Bridge. South of the inner city, a new bridge from the Pestsidan leads
to the Technical University's development area on the Buda side.
An important part of Budapest's cityscape is also all the bathhouses built
over the health-giving hot springs. Some of them have been in use since the
Turks' time, while others were built around the turn of the last century.
The Danube beaches and the castle area are included in the UNESCO World
More than half of Hungary's industrial production is concentrated in
Budapest. The oldest industrial branch, the food industry, is still of great
importance. Later, the engineering and textile industries and mainly during the
post-war period metal, chemical and petrochemical and electronic industries were
developed. During the late 1990s and early 2000s, many Hungarian companies
formed joint ventures with foreign partners; this happened within the automotive
industry. The city has long been a major tourist city
Budapest was developed during the second half of the 19th century into a
major cultural city, partly parallel to Vienna. The city has a lot of theaters,
many located in the neighborhood around Avenyn (Andrássy út). The State Opera
(Állami Operaház, built in 1875–84 in neo-Renaissance style), together with the
Academy of Music (Liszt Ferenc Zeneművészeti Főiskola), marks Budapest's role as
a music city. Other institutions in the music industry are the State Symphony
Orchestra, the Hungarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Operetta Theater. The
main museums are the National Museum (Magyar Nemzeti Múzeum) and the Art Museum.
The Historical Museum and the Bartók Archives have rich collections of
documents. Budapest is the seat of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences (Magyar
Tudományos Akadémia), and the city has two universities (the oldest from 1635),
a technical college and a large number of higher education institutions.
In the current urban area, people have been living for millennia. In Roman
times a relief troop fort was built and later, 90 AD, a legion fort under the
name Aquincum. Around these, civilian suburbs grew up. Aquincum gained
the status of a Roman colony in the early 20th century. The Legion Chief's
palace on the Danube beach has been partially excavated, and several blocks of
the colony have become an archaeological park. During the migration, Aquincum
Budapest was resurrected as the Magyars conquered the country in the late
800s. The settlements on the site became more important by crossing a river
between Western Europe and Kiev here. The names Buda and Pest began to be used
in the 1100s. After a Mongol attack in 1241, the medieval Buda was provided with
a castle in stone, and the court and the royal administration had their seat in
Buda from the 1300s. Plague received city privileges in 1244, and in the late
Middle Ages the two cities developed into thriving commercial cities. The
Turkish occupation of 1541–1686 meant a decline. Budapest underwent a strong
development under the two Habsburg regiments Maria Teresia (1740–80) and Josef
The decades around 1850 meant that Budapest was transformed from small town
to big city. This was done by B. becoming the railroad connected and
industrialized, by the resumption of formal capital functions in 1867 and by
officially merging Óbuda, Buda and Pest in 1873. The change is reflected in,
above all, planning and construction. Budapest continued to develop during the
interwar period, not least as an industrial city. In the end of World War II,
severe battles were fought in the city; all the bridges across the Danube were
blown up and significant damage was added to the urban development. Damages to
buildings also occurred during the 1956 revolt.