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View all events 1942–1945

March 19, 1944

German Troops Occupy Hungary

Following the German occupation of Hungary, Hungarian Admiral Miklos Horthy was permitted to remain as Regent, but Prime Minister Miklos Kallay was dismissed. The Germans installed General Dome Sztojay, who had previously served as Hungarian minister to Berlin and was fanatically pro-German, as prime minister. Sztojay committed Hungary to continuing the war effort and cooperated with the Germans in the deportation of Hungarian Jews, the last intact Jewish community in occupied Europe.

In April 1944, Hungarian authorities ordered Jews living outside Budapest (roughly 500,000) to concentrate in certain cities, usually regional government seats. Hungarian gendarmes were sent into rural regions to round up Jews of all ages and send them to the cities. The urban areas in which the Jews were forced to concentrate were enclosed and referred to as ghettos. Sometimes the ghettos encompassed the area of a former Jewish neighborhood. In other cases the ghetto was merely a single building, such as a factory. From May 15 to July 9, 1944, Hungarian gendarmerie officials, under the guidance of German SS officials, deported around 440,000 Jews from Hungary.

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