Monument to Polish statesman unveiled in Budapest

The Polish and Hungarian parliamentary speakers marked the centenary of Poland's independence by unveiling a bust of Józef Piłsudski in Budapest on Wednesday.

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The architect of Polish independence, Piłsudski had been honoured in Hungary before World War II with a street carrying his name near the park where his statue was unveiled. But after 1947 the street name was changed.

“Marshal Piłsudski was a great supporter of close co-operation between Poland and Hungary," the speaker of the Polish Parliament's lower house Marek Kuchciński said at the unveiling ceremony.

Over the past decades only a plaque was dedicated to Piłsudski in the Hungarian capital, and it became the commemorative venue for the Hungarian Polish community for many years. But its members have sought a more substantial monument to mark Piłsudski's achievements, a cause supported by the Polish Parliament, who donated the costs for the bust.

“Let this statue demonstrate the joint fate of Hungarians and Poles, their eternal loyalty and friendship to each other," Hungary's parliament speaker Laszlo Kover said.

Piłsudski helped Poland regain its independence in 1918 and dominated its politics through the 1920s and 1930s.

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