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Hungary: RAOUL WALLENBERG MEMORIAL YEAR

Commemorative stamp marks the centenary of Raoul Wallenberg's birth 
Magyar Posta is jointly issuing with the Swedish Post a stamp to commemorate the centenary of the birth of Raoul Wallenberg. The stamp, its first day cover and the cancellation mark were designed by the graphic artist Imre  Benedek.  The new stamp, 300,000 copies of which were made in the state printing company Állami Nyomda, is to be presented at a ceremony in the Stamp Museum on 10 May 2012. At the event the stamp will be jointly released by László Geszti, Magyar Posta's CEO, and Gergely Prő hle, Deputy State Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. At the same time, the representative stamp exhibition Rescuers  opens in the Stamp Museum.
 Raoul Wallenberg (Stockholm, 4 August 1912 – presumed 16 July 1947), who was born into a well-off commercial family, came to Budapest after the German occupation of Hungary in 1944. The diplomat immediately became involved in rescue actions and in August 1944 issued 4,500 protective passports, which, on his insistence, were accepted as a document for a family, thus a single passport could save the lives of several people. He continued his work until 17 January 1945, when he was detained by Soviet troops and later taken to the Soviet Union, from where he never returned. (Source: wallenberg.hu)  

On the left of the stamp is a portrait of Raoul Wallenberg, which uses a hitherto unpublished, contemporary photograph of the Swedish diplomat which featured on the form applying for a Hungarian visa. On the right of the stamp is a picture of a Schutz Pass, a protective passport issued to help rescue people. In the background in the centre is a motif symbolising the several thousand people saved from deportation. The first day cover for the stamp shows one of the three Wallenberg memorials in Budapest, the statue by the sculptor Imre Varga, erected in 1987. The composition is completed by Wallenberg's well-known statement, "For me there is no other choice," in Hungarian and Swedish.  

The Swedish Post is releasing a stamp block with similar design elements to the Hungarian stamp. Magyar Posta recommends the new Hungarian and Swedish stamps on a joint first day cover to the attention of collectors and everyone interested. Magyar Posta also released a stamp honouring Raoul Wallenberg's memory on the eightieth anniversary of his birth in 1992. On that occasion the artistic portrait on the stamp was designed by the graphic artist György Oláh.  

Order code: 2012102010011 (stamp), 
2012102060012 (FDC) 
 Date of issue: 10 May 2012 
  Face value: HUF 340 
  Number of copies issued: 300,000 
  Perforated size of stamp: 45 x 30 mm (50 stamps/sheet) 
  Printed by Állami Nyomda 
  Designed by Imre Benedek 

Thanks to Juan Franco Crespo, Spain

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