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Ferenc Gyurcsány

Gyurcsány, Ferenc (fĕˈrĕnts dyŏrˈchänyə) [key], 1961–, Hungarian politician and investment executive, b. Pápa. Educated as a teacher and economist, he was president (1988–89) of Hungary's Communist Youth Alliance, but following the collapse of the Communist government he became (1990) a financial consultant—and a millionaire as a result of privatization deals. A senior adviser (2002–3) to Prime Minister Péter Medgyessy, he became minister of children, youth, and sports (2003–4) in the Socialist-led coalition government. When Medgyessy was ousted following several divisive ministerial dismissals, Gyurcsány was chosen as his successor. A blunt, sometimes confrontational speaker, he led the Socialist coalition to victory in 2006, but then sparked outrage among many Hungarians when, on a leaked tape of a party conference speech in which he called for reforms, he said that the Socialists had lied to get reelected. After the Alliance for Free Democrats left the coalition in Apr., 2008, Gyyrcsány headed a minority government; he resigned a year later as increasing economic woes made his government unpopular.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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