Sovereignty Protection Office: Foreign network active in 2022 election influence and war escalation

The network that influenced Hungary's 2022 parliamentary elections from abroad remains active today and is working towards escalating the war in Ukraine, according to a report released by the Sovereignty Protection Office on Wednesday.

The Sovereignty Protection Office's latest report highlights the ongoing activities of a foreign network that interfered in Hungary's 2022 parliamentary elections. This network, still operational, is currently working to escalate the war in Ukraine. The report, which examines videos posted on the X social media platform, reveals significant findings about the financial and operational mechanisms behind these influences.

According to the report, approximately $5.5 million was funneled into Hungary through the American-based foundation, Action for Democracy (A4D). A portion of these funds was directed to the DatAdat group, linked to former Hungarian Prime Minister Gordon Bajnai. The DatAdat group had previously been involved in the 2019 mayoral campaign of Gergely Karácsony, employing tactics deemed prejudicial and demeaning in terms of voter classification.

The Sovereignty Protection Office emphasized that the DatAdat group's services extended to managing social media platforms, mass email campaigns, and online petition systems, facilitating disinformation campaigns. The report underscores the necessity of strengthening the protection of Hungarian citizens' data sovereignty, noting that 6.1 million individuals' data were offered for these operations.

The report also indicates that this is not an isolated incident, but part of a long-standing threat posed by a network with extensive political and business interests across Central Europe. The network aims to influence political outcomes in countries where its interests conflict with local leadership. This has been evident in recent references to similar interferences in Poland and Slovakia.

Key figures within the network, such as Wesley K. Clark, a retired U.S. Army general and member of A4D's advisory board, and András Simonyi, a Hungarian diplomat based in Washington, were mentioned in the report. Clark was noted for his discussions about aligning military conflicts with business opportunities and his influence in shaping U.S. pro-war policies. The report also includes statements from Simonyi about the network's efforts to intensify the war in Ukraine and their critical stance towards the Biden administration for not intervening “sufficiently.”

The report also reveals that the network's activities are orchestrated through a complex structure involving multiple entities with a unified agenda to manipulate political landscapes. The Sovereignty Protection Office uncovered that the network has been operational for a significant period, indicating deep-rooted efforts to steer political outcomes in Central Europe.

Furthermore, the findings reveal that A4D, led by Dávid Korányi, played a pivotal role in mobilizing support and conducting aggressive, targeted media campaigns. The network's strategies involved significant donor contributions, with George Soros identified as a major donor. Korányi's connections and the strategic alignment of A4D with U.S. and EU political interests further highlight the sophisticated nature of this network.

In response to these threats, the Sovereignty Protection Office calls on Hungarian state authorities to remain vigilant.

Their report concludes that the activities of this network continue to pose severe risks to the integrity of electoral processes and the sovereignty of Hungary.