Fact Check: NO Record Zelenskyy Said 'Hungarians Are The Most Disgusting And Irritating People'


  • szerzõ: Lead Stories
Fact Check: NO Record Zelenskyy Said 'Hungarians Are The Most Disgusting And Irritating People' No Record

Did Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy call Hungarians disgusting and irritating? No, that's not true: While Zelenskyy has publicly butted heads with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, there is no record of him maligning the Hungarian nation in this manner.

The claim appeared in a Hungarian-language video (archived here) on TikTok on May 20, 2023. The text, translated by Lead Stories staff, read:

Hungarians are the most disgusting and irritating people in the whole world. -- Zelenskyy --

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:

TikTok screenshot

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Thu May 25 12:14:00 2023 UTC)

This claim began circulating on pro-Russian social-media accounts in April 2022, shortly after Zelenskyy publicly upbraided Orbán for what he deemed Hungary's failure to support Ukraine in its war with Russia. One iteration of the original claim on Facebook posted on April 11, 2022, remained viewable at the time of writing, but it linked to a Hungarian-language homepage that did not mention Zelenskyy.

If Zelenskyy had uttered such an insult, it would have generated international headlines. Hungary is a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), which supports Ukraine in its struggle to oust Russian invaders. Ukraine's Transcarpathia region is also home to some 125,000 ethnic Hungarians.

However, a Google search for the phrase in Hungarian turns up only articles by fact-checkers who debunked the claim when it first appeared in 2022. Searches for the phrase in Ukrainian and English came back with no results. Google indexes thousands of credible news websites.

The 2022 version of the claim cited an article (archived here) on Hungarian-language website Hír Magazin, which is known for sensationalism. The article offered a video produced by Hungarian news channel HírTV as proof of the Ukrainian president's animosity toward Hungarians, according to fact-checkers at Agence France-Presse. However, neither the video nor its accompanying text makes any mention of Zelenskyy disparaging his neighbors to the west.


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