Speak up for Hungary!

Attempts to control the funding of NGOs. Attempts to label NGOs that criticize the government as serving the interest of other political parties. Origo.hu, largest online news portal publishes evidence on misuse of public funds by a prominent Fidesz politican. The politician, Janos Lazar places the editor-in-chief and Origo.hu under pressure. The editor-in-chief was displaced.

Norwegian NGO Fund, which is only a small portion of the Norwegian Civil Grant, supports NGOs in several European countries, including Hungary. The Fund is operated by a consortium of four foundations in Hungary (Ökotárs Foundation, Autonomia Foundation, DemNet - Foundation for Development of Democratic Rights, Carpathian Foundation). High profile Fidesz politician and Minister János Lázár opened a debate about the distribution of the Fund’s money being impartial; according to him, foundations in the consortium are linked to left-wing green party LMP. Norway strictly declined the allegations and publicly ensured its satisfaction with the management of the Fund in Hungary. Last Friday, the government made public the list of recipients it considered problematic for "leftist political ties", such as the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union or the investigative journalism portal atlatszo.hu. Yesterday governmental inspectors visited offices of the foundations managing the grants, while the government said their tax number can be legally suspended if they refuse to submit to governmental examination.

Editor-in-chief of leading online newspaper Origo.hu, Gergő Sáling's contract was terminated. Journalists of the site supported the allegation that it happened because of recent articles unveiling possible misuse of public funds. Namely, Origo.hu after winning a freedom of information lawsuit revealed the details of a trip during which Mr. Lazar spent 2 M HUF (~9000 USD) on accommodation. The management of Origo.hu refuses the allegations, altough a many journalists quit Origo immediatley.

Both the fight on the NGOs and the repression of online media, the last ground of free speech in Hungary resembles of Putin’s Russia and the aspiration to silent the last critical voices.

Megosztás

Kapcsolódó hírek

Court dismissed the complaint of the 7. District’s Local Government, Budapest

On 30 Nov, 2006 the court’s judgment was made in favor of HCLU, representing Peter Marinov, former leader of ÓVÁS! Association against the 7. District.

Constitution-concerns of the Hungarian Judiciary Elite

Leading Hungarian NGOs, Transparency International Hungary and the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union besides expressing their criticism about the new Hungarian Constitution and the Constitution-writing process, wish to express their deep concern regarding the recent initiatives of the parliamentary majority to radically encroach upon the independence of the judiciary system.

Press Release: Meeting of High Commissioner of Police and President of HCLU

On August 7th, 2007 Dr. Bencze József, Liutenant General High Comissioner of Hungarian National Police invited Balázs Dénes, President of the HCLU and his colleagues to a meeting at the National Police Headquarters. For results of this meeting, please read the below press release.