Pope Tawadros II in Hungary to participate in national day celebrations as honorary guest

Ahram Online , Sunday 20 Aug 2023

Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria arrived in Budapest, Hungary, for a 4-day visit to participate as an honorary guest in national day celebrations, at the invitation of the Hungarian government.

Pope Tawadros
Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria and Patriarch of St. Mark arriving in Budapest, Hungary for a 4-day visit to participate as an honorary guest in national day celebrations. Photo courtesy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,


The Pope was received by Egypt’s ambassador to Hungary Mohamed El-Shennawy at Budapest International Airport, according to a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Sunday morning.

During his visit, Pope Tawadros is scheduled to meet with high-ranking Hungarian officials and Hungarian church leaders. 

He is also set to receive an honorary doctorate from one of Hungary's esteemed universities, as part of the visit. 

On 20 August every year, Hungary celebrates the establishment of the Hungarian state and the country’s more than 1,000-year-old history.

The holiday commemorates Hungary's first King, St. Stephen, and his canonization as the patron saint of Hungary by Pope Gregory VII on 20 August 1083 for his introduction of Christianity to the country.

The day has been celebrated for more than 250 years by both the government and the church since 1771, during the reign of Queen Maria Theresa.

Named after King Stephen, St. Stephen's Basilica is a Roman Catholic basilica located in Budapest, Hungary.

Egypt and Hungary: more than 60 years of relations

Egypt was the first Arab country to establish diplomatic relations with Hungary in 1928, opening its first embassy in Budapest in 1957.

In February, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán made an official visit to Cairo when he and President El-Sisi signed a joint declaration on Egyptian-Hungarian strategic partnership, deepening bilateral relations between the two countries.

Egypt and Hungary share strong economic ties and joint investments, with 74 Hungarian companies currently operating in Egypt in agriculture, manufacturing, tourism, and services.

They also have strong economic ties, with trade between the two countries reaching $400 million in 2021, according to a report from the Hungarian foreign ministry last year.

Hungary's exports to Egypt include machinery, electric generators, glass and organic chemicals, while Egypt exports cotton, fruits, vegetables, cement, fertilizers, carpets, ceramics, and plastic to Hungary.

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