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Neo-Nazis rally in Budapest to mark WW2 battle

Members of Neo-nazi group "Blood and Honour" commemorates the "Day of Pride" in Budapest's Heroes Square on February 14, 2009. REUTERS/Laszlo Balogh

BUDAPEST (Reuters) - About two thousand neo-Nazis from across Europe marked the anniversary of a World War Two battle in Budapest on Saturday and called for the continent to protect itself from foreign influence.

Several groups mark every year what they call “the Day of Honour”, when German and Hungarian troops tried to break out of the Hungarian capital, besieged by the Soviet army, in 1945. The event normally attracts a few hundred people.

“Europe’s old inhabitants, losing their traditions, have been reduced to existing here on the margins,” said Janos Endre Domokos, who heads Pax Hungarica, one of the organisers.

The far-right has gained some support in Hungary since the global financial crisis struck. Over 1,000 supporters of the Jobbik party protested on Friday against what they said was a rise in crimes committed by Romas, Hungary’s largest minority.

On Saturday, police said they had detained five people, four because they were carrying equipment which could be used as weapons.