CORONAVIRUS: Here's the latest
A regularly updated feed of the latest information about coronavirus in Hungary.Read more
An article published in today's Magyar Idők - the first in what the author says will be a series of reports - takes a close look at a group called Migration Aid and one of its leaders, András Siewert. It raises some troubling questions.
A number of Soros-funded NGOs in Hungary have declared that they will not comply with the new NGO law and will instead boycott out of civil disobedience. There’s nothing valiant in their cause, just hypocrisy. The fact that the same NGOs have no problem abiding by even stricter rules and regulations in Germany, Austria, Israel, and the US speaks for itself.
"The most recent statement by the US Department of State is another stark example of double standards, since the regulation in force in the USA is much stricter than that in Hungary. In the United States, Soros organizations could never do what they are doing in Europe," Hungary's International Communications Office said
The president referred to civil organizations as “indispensable and respectable” players of a democracy. He said that Hungary had over 56,000 civil organizations and insisted that 99 percent of them would be left unaffected by the new legislation
The Venice Commission does not doubt the legitimacy of the bill and had acknowledged that creating a transparent state of affairs concerning NGOs funded from abroad was a legitimate objective for parliament
Democracy means first and foremost accountability and the people’s right to participate in the decision making of their lives and futures. Governments, including the Hungarian government, are held accountable and can be voted out of power. The shadowy power networks of the “open society” are accountable to no one.
Hungary's Parliamentary Speaker said it is important to underline that Hungary recognizes the significant contribution of non-governmental organizations to the promotion of common values and goals. These organizations also play an important role in the democratic control of the government and shaping public opinion
Once again appearing before a plenary session of the European Parliament devoted to “the situation in Hungary,” Prime Minister Orbán once again called attention to the double standards and hypocrisy toward a country that “protects Germany, Austria and Sweden” by upholding its international obligations to protect the EU’s border.
Despite recent reports claiming that an “NGO crackdown” is under way in Hungary, the reported draft legislation confirms what the government of Hungary has been saying all along: this is about transparency in civil society. NGOs, not even those representing foreign interests, are not in jeopardy in Hungary.
Members of the European Parliament are so worried about the activities of certain foreign-funded NGOs that they’re calling for the EU to cut public funding for NGOs "demonstrably disseminating untruths". Others question "democratic legitimacy" of NGOs.