Dossier: Focus on Hungary

Dossier: Focus on Hungary

The Heinrich Böll Foundation has been compiling a dossier containing articles on the situation in Hungary since the right-wing government came to power in April 2010. The dossier is understood as forum for critical voices from Hungary. Their contributions reflect the socio-political changes in Hungary referring to current trends as well as long-term developments.

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Subscribe to the RSS-Feed of this dossier, or write to Zsófia Deák, Editor of the dossier (zsofia.deak@cz.boell.org).

Hungary after the election: Continuing on Orbán’s path

Hungary has become a laboratory of illiberal governance tailor-made to serve Fidesz’s goals. Its rhetoric is based on identity politics, conspiracy theories and enemy images. It has a massive Government-financed fake news industry. After this ellection a shift to a more moderate stance is not expected.

By Attila Juhász

Cultures of History Forum

Public Domain.

 In this special feature of the Cultures of History Forum the authors seek to place the ‘Lex CEU’ in a broader context, both regionally and historically, and ask what the state of academic freedom, civil society and liberal values is in the countries that came out of communist dictatorships more than 25 years ago.

Please visit the website of the Cultures of History Forum for further reading.

Sorry, not sorry

According to a recently surfaced voice recording, Hungary's House Speaker László Kövér admitted during a private discussion that Fidesz manipulatively redrew the borders of single-member constituencies for its own benefit.

By Attila Juhász, Róbert László

Hungary is to demolish critical NGOs with new bills

In recent weeks civil organisations in Hungary have been kept busy by a law package that the Government has drafted. It bears the name “Stop Soros” and would restrict freedom of expression and freedom of association as well as refugees’ right to protection.

By Nóra Köves

The game of hope – Asylum seekers at the Serbian-Hungarian border

Since Hungary has built the border fence, refugees have to wait for as long as a year to gain admission to the transit zone where they can file for asylum. Admission is hectic and slow and favours families and unaccompanied minors. Most of those who attempt crossing illegally are single males over 18.

By Momir Turudić

Publications

Refugees, Asylum and Migration Issues in Hungary

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How far does Budapest's influence extend? How has the "refugee crisis" affected regional cooperation? This study gives background information, facts and data on the last three years of the “refugee crisis”: its social, political, policy and diplomatic repercussions.

Focus on Hungary: Refugees, Asylum and Migration

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The study analyses the Hungarian Government’s rhetoric and policy measures with regard to refugee, asylum and migration issues and  shows how democratic opposition parties, the far-right, and civil society actors have responded to the Government’s anti-refugee policies.

Feature: Lex CEU - Orbán’s attack on academic freedom

On April 4th 2017, the Hungarian government passed amendments which are obviously directed against the renowned Central European University (CEU), founded by George Soros. In our feature, we collect articles on Orbán’s attack on academic freedom.

The Programme "Europe for Citizens 2017"

The programme "Europe for Citizens" aims to make the European Union, its institutions, committees, workings, and representatives, more visible and comprehensible to Europe's citizens.

Further articles

Budapest gratuliert!

Analysis

Viktor Orbán, facing an upcoming general election, may generate domestic political capital if the German government becomes more decisive in demanding that EU member states comply with the European Union’s migration-related regulations. 

By Edit Zgut

Hungary: a state captured by Russia

Hungary’s liaison with the Kremlin has turned the economic “Eastern Opening” into the construction of a full-blown illiberal democracy. This goes hand in hand with Russia’s growing leverage over Hungary with respect to economic as well as soft power.

By Péter Krekó, Lóránt Győri

Orbán’s theatrical struggle against big, bad Berlin

Orbán tries to destroy Germany’s positive image in Central Eastern Europe, depicting Germany as the capital of the decadent, liberal, pro-immigration EU that is doomed to fail. Tolerating such a behaviour would be a huge long-term strategic mistake for Germany.

By Edit Zgut, Bulcsú Hunyadi , Péter Krekó

Hostile takeover: How Orbán is subjugating the media in Hungary

Viktor Orbán and his closest allies have taken control of most of the Hungarian media. Journalists at loyal outlets are expected to closely follow instructions from the state apparatus; in exchange, they receive advertising money from government institutions.

By Krisztian Simon, Tibor Rácz

Veronika Móra: “Solidarity is a very strong force”

Interview

In Hungary, NGOs are now required to register as “civic organisations funded from abroad” if they receive financial support from a foreign source. The government is trying to delegitimise any organisation that criticises certain government policies, says Veronika Móra.

By Silja Schultheis

Lex CEU: A Kafkaesque Affair

Interview

The Hungarian government’s recently adopted legislation seem to specifically target the Central European University, creating a situation of existential instability. Anna Frenyó spoke with Zsolt Enyedi, the university’s Pro-Rector for Hungarian Affairs about the latest developments.

We Will Stay and Fight

Interview

On Tuesday, 13 June, Hungary’s National Assembly passed a law that requires NGOs which receive foreign funds above the annual threshold of 24000 EUR to register and label themselves as “foreign-funded organisations” on their websites and in their publications.

By Anna Frenyó

The role of irony in the political activism of Hungarian youth

In April 2017, a series of demonstrations took place in Budapest against an amendment to the Higher Education Act. They were organised by mostly social media-based groups, but they differed in several aspects from the demonstration culture that has been the norm in Hungary in recent decades.

By Andrea Szabó

"It’s about a battle of ideas in which we have to constantly engage our opponents"

In the beginning of April, the Hungarian President János Áder signed into force certain amendments to the Higher Education Act which in their particular formulation are obviously directed against the renowned Central European University (CEU), based in Budapest. We discussed with President Michael Ignatieff the implications of the new legislation on the university and its future prospects.
By Peter Brod

Serious human rights violations in the Hungarian asylum system

Two years ago, the Hungarian government began to criminalise asylum seekers and migrants with clear political motivations. Within a few months, their initial verbal aggression and hate campaign targeting refugees had developed into actual legislative amendments which violated refugees’ rights.

By Nóra Köves
All articles on Hungary from 2011 until now

Further Publications

Diverging Voices, Converging Policies

The annexation of Crimea in March 2014 and the launch of a hybrid war against Ukraine was Russia’s answer to the revolution triggered by Euromaidan. In order to explain the differing reactions of individual Visegrad countries, the offices of the Heinrich-Böll-Stiftung in Prague and Warsaw asked their partner organisations to systematically analyse how these countries have dealt with the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

Interview-Series "Agents of Change"