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Largest military exercise of the past 30 years starts in Hungary

Text: Péter Snoj | Photo: Szebáld Szakál, Sztaniszláv Horváth, Gábor Kormány |  11:34 November 8, 2023

The multinational countrywide military exercise Adaptive Hussars 2023 has started. The opening ceremony held in Hódmezővásárhely on 7 November was attended by President of Hungary Katalin Novák, Commander-in-Chief of the Hungarian Defence Forces; Defence Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky; and General Dr. Gábor Böröndi, Chief of HDF General Staff.


Speaking in the barracks of the HDF 30th Mechanized Infantry Brigade, the Minister of Defence stated that we live in the era of threats. “Serious cracks have appeared on the decades-long firm building of security. Europe is stricken by war, illegal migration and terror threat along with it”, he said, adding that “to the government of Hungary, the most important things are to preserve peace and guarantee the security of our homeland and the Hungarian people”. Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky underlined that “in close cooperation with our allies, we are building the well-trained Hungarian Defence Forces that are able to give adequate responses to all security challenges.”

The Minister of Defence also stated that the Hungarian Defence Forces are getting stronger and developing. Their manpower and military equipment keep increasing, the result of the recruitment campaign is well visible, and the Hungarian Defence Forces are going to increasingly higher levels. “Exercise Adaptive Hussars 2023 also belongs to this series. We are testing and developing the defence capabilities of our homeland in the framework of these military maneuvers that affect a large part of the country and involve NATO organizations deployed in Hungary.”

He added that the organization and conduct of this military exercise – a very complex one that is taking place with the participation of American, Croatian, Italian and Turkish forces, extends to a significant portion of the area of the country and involves most units of the Hungarian Defence Forces and a significant amount of state administration – is a serious task. “Currently, in its initial phase, the exercise involves close to 1000 troops, of which 340 are foreign servicemembers and 170 are Hungarian reservists. Its main objective is to test the cooperation between the civil defence administration system of the country and the Hungarian Defence Forces.”


The minister said that around 4500 personnel are taking part in this exercise with more than 200 different items of military equipment.

With the above, this is the largest exercise of the Hungarian Defence Forces planned in 2023 and conducted with the participation of active-duty and reserve personnel. He pointed out that “We must be ready to do our duty in live situations for our family that we love, for the settlement where we are home, for the country where we live and for the nation to which we belong.”

Following the opening ceremony of Exercise Adaptive Hussars 23, – in the company of General Dr. Gábor Böröndi, Chief of HDF General Staff – President of Hungary Katalin Novák and Defence Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky were shown around the Hódmezővásárhely barracks, saw its infrastructural developments and had the opportunity to personally acquaint themselves with the Lynx armored infantry fighting vehicle and its capabilities.