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100,000 protest Hungary leader

Seek resignation of prime minister

BUDAPEST -- A hundred thousand opposition supporters rallied yesterday during ceremonies to mark Hungary's national holiday to demand that the country's Socialist prime minister resign.

The protests by the parliamentary opposition and far-right groups marked a renewed campaign to oust Ferenc Gyurcsany, whose admission that he lied about the budget to win elections last year triggered seven weeks of violent demonstrations.

A rally by the main opposition Fidesz party attracted around 100,000 people, including radical groups. Gyurcsany had earlier been called a "communist pig" by hecklers during ceremonies at parliament and the national museum.

"There is a tension in society and the cause is that they lied and we cannot trust them," said Kalman Hencsei, a 55-year-old teacher who was carrying a Hungarian flag.

There were no reports of violence, although Mayor Gabor Demszky of Budapest had to be protected with umbrellas against eggs thrown from a , booing crowd of far-right protesters.

"The mercenaries of fear are among us again. It is because of them that many people awaited the anniversary of our most peaceful revolution with fear," said Demszky, a prominent dissident under communism.

Police have said they were prepared for trouble at the event, which celebrates the country's 1848 uprising against Habsburg rule, but did not expect a repeat of last year's clashes. There were also demonstrations in other cities.

Parliament is still barricaded from last year's protests in which 800 were injured. A heavy police presence kept the demonstrators far away yesterday .

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