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President János Áder joined commemorations of the leaders of Hungary’s revolution and freedom fight executed by Austria in 1849.

The life and death of Count Lajos Batthyány, prime minister of Hungary’s first independent government, reminds Hungarians of the value of a country’s freedom and independence, Áder told the commemoration held at the Budapest mausoleum of the martyred prime minister. “Batthyány not only died for Hungary but also lived, worked and fought for it,” Áder said. The revolution and freedom fight of 1848 were linked by the era of civic transformation, the president said. The few months that separated the revolution and the freedom fight saw the birth of a new homeland through the enactment of new laws and the achievements of Hungary’s reform era, he added. This was the era in which Hungary restocked its treasury, established the conditions for political stability and embarked on new state developments, he noted. Batthyány’s government was able to lay the foundations of Hungary’s autonomy within a matter of a few months, Áder said, noting that this process had often taken decades or centuries for countries “that were luckier in their histories”.