Notice on the audio recordings

None of the tapes of the New York witness hearings have been preserved. (The English transcripts of these testimonies are available here.) With a few exceptions, the recordings of the European testimonies survived in full length, of which we are publishing three-minute excerpts on our website. Those family members or researchers, who wish to access complete audio recordings of particular witnesses, can do it in person in OSA's Research Room, or by sending a letter of request to:

Witness Testimonies

After a preliminary screening based on the best available information, members of the UN Special Committee on the Problem of Hungary arranged for the first round of hearings, which were conducted in the New York headquarters of the United Nations and involved thirty-five witnesses. After this the Committee traveled to Europe, where between March 11 and April 16, 1957 they heard the testimonies of a further 76 witnesses.

Finding and interviewing witnesses was by no means a simple task for the members of the Committee. The first witnesses who were heard in public sessions in New York (Anna Kéthly, Béla Király and József Kővágó), themselves recommended names of people for further hearings. In addition, the governments of several Western countries (Italy, France, Denmark, Great Britain and Belgium), along with individual interviewees in Europe, made still more recommendations. And besides all these, over two hundred refugees replied in writing to the Committee’s invitation, volunteering to give evidence, and some of these, too, were given the chance to appear before the Committee. [+]


New York

ny-321x400UN Headquarters
(January 28-March 5, 1957)

Fónagy, Dezső (February 13)
member of a workers' council

Horváth, János (February 19)
economist, member of the Independent Smallholders' Party

Ipoly, Zoltán (February 14)
member of a workers' council and the Worker's Parliament of Budapest

Jaszlics, Iván (February 23)

Kéthly, Anna (January 28 and February 1)
President of the Social Democratic Party, Ambassador to the UN, Minister of State

Király, Béla (January 29, February 2 and 5)
Major General, commander of the National Guard

Kiss, Sándor (February 15 and March 5)
professor of philosophy, an organizer of the Independent Smallholders' Party and leader of the Peasant Alliance

Kővágó, József (January 29 and February 5)
former mayor of Budapest

László, János (March 5)
former German Army officer and prisoner of Siberian and Hungarian labor camps

Marer, [Márer?] Pál (March 1)

Pongrátz, Ödön (February 8)
one of the leaders of the Corvin Alley group

Szentadorjány, Gyula (February 22)
member of the Independent Smallholders’ Party and the Revolutionary Council of Hungary

Szörényi, Éva (February 14)
actress, member of the Revolutionary Committee of the Hungarian National Theater

Török, István (February 26)
member of the Revolutionary Council of Transdanubia

Witness A (February 11)
Social Democrat

Witness B (February 11)
self-educated writer and factory worker from a village on the Czechoslovak side of the border

Witness C (February 13)
electrical technician and student, member of the Postal Trade Union

Witness D (February 19)

Witness E (February 20)

Witness F (February 22)
deported to the Soviet Union during the revolution

Witness G (February 23)

Witness H (February 23)
medical doctor

Witness I (February 25)
degree in law and animal husbandry, employee of the Ministry of Agriculture

Witness J (February 25)

Witness K (February 25)
Major in the regular Hungarian Army

Witness L (February 26)
electrician and freedom fighter

Witness M (February 26)
Red Cross volunteer

Witness N (February 27)
mechanical engineer

Witness O (February 27)
mechanical engineer

Witness P (February 28 and March 2)
ormer heavyweight boxer, a Social Democrat, a confidant and secretary to Prime Minister Imre Nagy

Witness Q (March 1)
member of the Dunapentele Revolutionary Council

Witness R (March 1)
film director, newspaper correspondent and photographer

Witness S (March 4)
university student

Witness T (March 4)

Witness U (March 4)
mechanical engineer and secondary school teacher

Witness V (March 5)


genf1-400x297Palais des Nations
(March 11-15, 1957)

Benjámin, Olivér dr. (March 11)
member of the Social Democratic Party and Secretary General of the Hungarian Revolutionary Council

Shawcross, Hartley William (March 13)
representative of the the International Commission of Jurists

Szarka, Gábor (March 15)
political scientist, politician and member of the Hungarian National Peasant Party

Witness W (March 11)
medical doctor and member of the Corvin Alley group

Witness X [Heltai, György] (March 12, 14 and 15)

Witness Y (March 15)


roma1-400x310Palazzo dei Congressi
(March 18-21, 1957)

Buri, István (March 20)
Commander of the National Guard in Csepel

Értékes, József (March 19-20)
Deputy Commander of the National Guard in Csepel

Forgács, István (March 20-21)
political secretary to Minister Zoltán Tildy

Gosztonyi, Pál (March 18)
mechanical engineer

Gyimesi, Ferenc (March 21)
commander at the Dunapentele Barracks

Legáth, Tibor (March 20)
liaison officer to Béla Király

Szalay, Dénes (March 19)
architect, President of the Revolutionary Council in the 14th district in Budapest

Várfalvi, Lajos (March 18-19, and April 4 in Geneva)
president of the Revolutionary Council in South Budapest

Witness Z (March 20)
member of the Independent Smallholders' Party

Witness AA (March 20)
university student and first-aid nurse

Witness BB (March 20)
medical doctor


becs1-400x375[Palais Palffy], 1 Wallnerstrasse 6A
(March 25-27, 1957)

Sebestyén, György (March 27)
literary editor

Witness CC [Lengyel, Antal] (March 25)
member of Presidency of the Social Democrat Party, editor of Szabolcs Szatmár Népe, imprisoned shortly by the Soviets

Witness DD (March 25)
freedom fighter

Witness FF (March 25)
freedom fighter deported to a Soviet prison

Witness HH (March 25)
lawyer and member of the Revolutionary Council in Veszprém

Witness II (March 25-26)
member of the Revolutionary Council in a Transdanubian village

Witness JJ (March 26)
student at the Technical University in Budapest

Witness KK (March 26)
chauffeur and truck driver, secretary and deputy chairman of the hotel and restaurant workers' revolutionary committee

Witness LL (March 26)
temporary worker at a hospital

Witness MM (March 26)
freedom fighter deported to a Soviet prison

Witness NN (March 26)
stenographer at the Free Radio of Gyõr

Witness OO (March 26)
member of the revolutionary committee of painters and artists

Witness PP (March 26)
high school student in Budapest

Witness QQ (March 27)
captured and interrogated by the ÁVH, then deported to the Soviet Union

Witness RR (March 27)

Witness SS (March 27)

Witness TT (March 27)
volunteer first-aid worker and nurse

Witness UU (March 27)

Witness VV (March 27)

Witness XX [Kassa, Péter] (March 27)

Witness YY (March 27)

Witness ZZ (March 27)

Witness AAA (March 27)
typist and stenographer for the ÁVH

Witness BBB (March 27)
composer and music critic

Witness CCC (March 27)
deputy-commander of the freedom fighters of Buda

Witness DDD (March 27)
prosecutor in the office of the Chief Prosecutor

Witness EEE (March 27)
retired major

Witness FFF (March 27)
secretary of the revolutionary workers' council in Csepel

Witness GGG (March 27)


london1-400x359[British Academy], 10, Carlton House Terrace
(March 29-April 1, 1957)

Hadik, János [pen name] (March 30)
engineer in a uranium mine

Hódi, Sándor (March 30)
newspaperman, editor of Igazság

Pálóczi-Horváth, György (March 30 and April 1)
writer and historian

Witness HHH [Ignotus, Pál] (March 29)
writer and journalist

Witness III [Zádor, Pál] (March 29)
student of mathematics at the University of Debrecen

Witness JJJ [Zádor, István] (March 29)
economist from Győr

Witness KKK (March 30)
member of the revolutionary workers' council in Gyõr

Witness LLL (March 30)
a woman living on Bródy Sándor Street

Witness MMM (April 1)
lawyer and member of the Independent Smallholders' Party


genf1-400x297Palais des Nations
(April 3-15, 1957)

Havas, Gábor (April 5)
prominent Social Democrat

Horváth, Géza (April 3)
medical doctor, commander of a fighting group in the Mecsek

Oltványi, [László] (April 5)
chemical engineer

Pásztory, Tibor (April 5 and 6)
economic advisor to Zoltán Tildy, Minister of State

Várfalvi, Lajos (April 4, third hearing) -> see also Rome, March 18-19

Witness NNN (April 3)
leading member of the Revolutionary Council in Gyõr

Witness OOO (April 3)
professor of law, commander of the university National Guard and member of the Independent Smallholders' Party

Witness PPP (April 6 and 8)
engineer and professor at the Budapest Technical University

Witness QQQ (April 6)
chauffeur from Miskolc

Witness RRR (April 8 and 10)
illegal communist since 1938, freedom fighter from Zugló

Witness SSS (April 10)
former politician of the Independent Smallholders' Party

Witness TTT (April 10)

Witness UUU (April 10)
assistant film director with Jean Renoir

Witness VVV (April 11)
MP and and member of the Independent Smallholders' Party

Witness WWW (April 11)
member in exile of the Greater Budapest Central Workers' Council

Witness XXX [Magos, Gábor] (April 15)
agrarian engineer and college professor, head of the Soroksár State Farm

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