Nyilaskeresztes Párt - Hungarista Mozgalom

  • Arrow Cross Party - Hungarist Movement
  • Arrow Cross
Type of Entity
Corporate Body

Dates of Existence

(1935) 1939-1945


Arrow Cross Party was the most popular right-wing extremist movement in Hungary before and during WWII. The party was founded in 1935 under the name of Party of National Will. Its leader, former officer of the General Staff, Ferenc Szálasi was imprisoned (1938-1940) and his party dissolved several times, however, managed to return to political life. In the last pre-war elections in 1939 the Arrow Cross gained 29 seats, making it the second largest party in Parliament. The party was re-named to Arrow Cross Party-Hungarist Movement in 1942. After Regent Miklós Horthy’s attempt to extricate from war on October 15, 1944, the Arrow Cross Party assumed power with Nazi support. From October 16, 1944, until March 28, 1945, Ferenc Szálasi was prime minister of Hungary as well as its plenipotentiary head of state, bearing the title “Leader of the Nation.” Paramilitary forces of the Party, known as Party Service (pártszolgálat) and Armed National Service (fegyveres nemzetszolgálat) committed several atrocities and war crimes during their short reign, which claimed the lives of thousands of people, mostly Jews and Roma. Following the war, Szálasi and several other Arrow Cross leaders were sentenced to death and executed.