The Gay Propaganda Law Has Already Done Harm Before It Has Come Into Effect
The homophobic law adopted by the Hungarian government majority last month has a chilling effect on sex education and an enabling effect on bigotry.
Orbán Strikes Civil Society Again
The Hungarian government has adopted new rules designed to intimidate Hungarian NGOs and people who donate money to them. With the space for civil society in Hungary rapidly shrinking, the support and solidarity of the international community is needed more than ever.
Outsourcing Autocracy: The Rise of the Hungarian Deep State
The right-wing authoritarian government of Hungary decided to give away billions of Euros in public funds to private foundations controlled by a small political-economic elite. Thereby effectively forming a shadow government that can continue to rule the country, regardless of the results of the parliamentary elections.
The Deep Moral Crisis of the Hungarian Establishment
The tale of the anti-gay MEP arrested at a gay sex party is not the first, and probably won’t be the last in the long line of scandals that reveal the deep moral crisis of the Hungarian elite. But will it be enough to shake Orban’s system? On a cold Friday night at the end…
“Political Pressure is Often Exercised through Business Means” Interview with Investigative Journalists Blanka Zöldi and András Pethő
Direkt36 is a Budapest-based investigative journalism center that follows the Pro Publica model of in-depth research and partnership-based distribution to maximize readership. They interpret accountability broadly; they believe in the responsibility to show the public how decisions are made, and to show who really holds the power. András Pethő co-founded Direkt36 with Gergely Sáling and Balázs…
What Freedom-Loving Hungarians Expect from a Biden Presidency
Joe Biden is favored to win the presidency in the upcoming U.S. elections. He has condemned the Hungarian prime minister and praised “freedom-loving Hungarians.” What would his presidency mean for pro-democracy activists in practice? We interviewed human rights leaders on the ground, who told us about their perceptions of U.S. foreign policy in Hungary, what changed during the Trump era, and what a good relationship with U.S. diplomacy means to them.
David Takes on Goliath: The Struggle for Academic Freedom in Hungary
For a month now, hundreds of Hungarian students have occupied their campus and resist the government’s pressure to eliminate the autonomy of their university. Their fight attracted international attention and evoked support from broad ranges of society. In this article we try to put this story in the context and present you the challenges of resisting autocracy in a hybrid regime.
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This blog provides you English news updates, articles, and videos about rising authoritarian rule in Hungary.
WHY DO WE NEED IT NOW?
We live in an age when democracy is in decay and authoritarianism is rising. One of the first countries where the tide turned and the process of democratisation was reversed is Hungary. Since it came to power in 2010, the government of Viktor Orban has been slowly undermining the rule of law with its constant attacks against democratic institutions, independent press, and civil society.
According to the Nations in Transit report published by Freedom House in 2020, Hungary is no longer a democracy but a “hybrid regime”, having lost its status as a “semi-consolidated democracy”.
Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 epidemic, the situation has further deteriorated. The government used the crisis as a pretence for a power-grab that has been unprecedented in the European Union: the Orban government can now govern by decree, without any constitutional checks or balances, for an unspecified time period. Armoured with its newly gained powers, the government is now launching further assaults against civil liberties and the rule of law.
Civil society and the remnants of the independent press make huge efforts to monitor and document these assaults, but they often remain invisible to those who do not speak Hungarian. This blog aims to fill this gap and provide an analytic insight into rising authoritarianism by presenting relevant cases for abuses of power, and giving voice to activists and communities under attack.