Péter Szijjártó, Hungary’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Photo courtesy of kormany.hu

The Hungarian government will donate 1.2 billion forints (3.2 million euros) to help Middle East Christians, reports the news site, About Hungary.

Almost half the money (580 million forints) will be used to rebuild homes in Iraq. The rest will go towards supporting humanitarian work carried out by Catholic and Orthodox Christian charities in Lebanon.

According to Monday’s official Hungarian Gazette, (Magyar Közlöny), the donation is aimed at assisting Christians to stay in their homelands. The Hungarian news agency MTI stated that the funding will also help families of other persecuted religions and ethnicity in the region.

Hungary’s foreign minister, Péter Szijjártó, said at a UN conference in Geneva on 7 March that 80 per cent of murders tied to religion across the world are Christians, which makes Christianity “the most threatened” religious community. He added that “for some hypocritical reason the Western world will not acknowledge this, and measures to protect Christian communities have not been taken”.

Szijjártó also said that relocating threatened communities was “no option” and insisted that they must be ensured “the opportunity of a safe return and life”. He called for perpetrators of crimes against Christians to be prosecuted, and said that the United Nations should provide “administrative zones” in which Christians could return to their homes.