Mar 12, 2007, 12:59 GMT

Budapest – A delegation of 174 Israeli soldiers visited several Holocaust memorials on a three-day visit to Hungary, a spokesperson for the Israeli embassy said in Budapest on Monday.

The soldiers – most of them sergeants – went to Hungary as part of a programme called ‘Witnesses in Uniform.’ The trip, during which the soldiers also stopped off in Poland, had helped to strengthen the bond between Israel and Jews living in eastern and central Europe, the head of the delegation, General Ila Harari said.

On Sunday night, the soldiers took part in an event at Budapest’s Holocaust museum, where Israel’s ambassador to Hungary, David Admon, bemoaned that signs of renewed anti-Semitism were ‘seeming to grow’ in Hungary.

Some 600,000 Jews were killed during the Holocaust in Hungary at the end of the Second World War.

During recent protests against the government in autumn 2006, right-wing and radical groups had shouted anti-Semitic slogans.