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- This article is about the 1950s Hungarian organization. For a World War II Polish one, see Workers' Militia PPS-WRN.
Following the quelled Revolution in Hungary (1956), the Revolutionary Worker's and Peasant's Government ordered on February 18, 1957 the formation of the Workers' Militia (Munkásőrség). It replaced the counter-revolutionary regime's special police force (karhatalom or also known as 'pufajkások', named after their Soviet-style quilted jackets). The slate-grey uniformed and armed Militia's aim was to defend the means of production. It was a voluntary service, but obviously offered some career advantages. Starting with 20,000 members, it gradually developed into a large armed force (60,000 strong), although they were never deployed.
The first commander of the organization was Lajos Halász (1957-1962), followed by Árpád Papp (1962-1970), then lastly Sándor Borbély (1970-1989). On October 31, 1989, a referendum was held with the question: "Should the Workers' Militia be disbanded?". The answer was an overwhelming Yes (94.9%), a result which confirmed the previously-adopted law (1989 XXXth).
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