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<nettime> Hungary in focus
allan siegel on Sun, 16 Feb 2014 11:17:54 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> Hungary in focus


Hungary in focus

In recent years, Hungary has been a constant concern for anyone interested in European politics and Eurozine has published extensively on different aspects of the Hungarian situation. Ahead of the Hungarian elections in 2014, we have collected some of those articles dealing with both recent developments and broader issues relating to Hungarian politics, history and culture.

This collection of texts puts into perspective how, after the fall of the Iron Curtain, Hungary's democratic reforms were held up as an example to the states of central eastern Europe. Twenty years later, the political process suffered a sudden reversal following the election in 2010 of the Fidesz government under Viktor Orbán. Now the dismantling of Hungary's political and constitutional system continues.

However, the focus also includes a series of responses to serious unrest on the streets of Budapest in September 2006 after the then Hungarian Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsány admitted to downplaying the scale of the national debt in the run-up to elections earlier the same year.

Gábor Attila Tóth: Power instead of law

As the Fidesz government dismantles Hungary's political and constitutional system, Gábor Attila Tóth considers the influence of international institutions and the efficacy of domestic, democratic resources far from exhausted. On the contrary, the role played by both will likely be decisive. [ more ]

Robert Hodonyi, Helga Trüpel: Together against Orbán: Hungary's new opposition

Amid international concern over government reforms that endanger democracy in Hungary, Hodonyi and Trüpel discover a political renaissance in Hungarian civil society. Ahead of elections in spring 2014, this may well be an antidote to the EU's "political half-heartedness". [ more ]

Gábor Halmai: Towards an illiberal democracy

Hungary's new constitution contradicts European standards on numerous counts: it sets in stone government policy; it is biased towards "ethnic" Hungarians; and it undermines the independence of regulatory institutions including the constitutional court and media. [ more ]

György Dalos, Miklós Haraszti, György Konrád, László Rajk
The decline of democracy -- the rise of dictatorship

In a "New Year's appeal", thirteen intellectuals and public figures who opposed Hungary's communist regime in the 1970s outline their concerns about Hungary's new constitution and call on Europe to help halt a slide towards a new dictatorship. [ more ]

Miklós Haraszti: Notes on Hungary's media law package

Hungary's media law could lead to a depoliticization of the media the likes of which exists in Russia and other post-Soviet democracies, writes the former OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media. The alterations to the law will do little to this halt this tendency. [ more ]



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