Politics

Mr. Orbán drives away... Photo: Facebook.

Calls for Orbán’s resignation: In Quaestor scandal, all roads lead to Fidesz

The usually splintered Hungarian left-centre opposition is now rallying around the possibility of holding a vote of non-confidence in parliament, after it surfaced that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán ordered government ministries and departments to withdraw funds from the recently collapsed Quaestor brokerage firm, days before it went bankrupt. Mr. Orbán claimed that it was after the Buda Cash scandal that he […]

by · March 27, 2015 · Politics
Viktor Orbán in Sopron, on March 25th, 2015. Photo: Facebook.

Hungary’s Orbán set to launch new media empire

This week’s issue of Heti Válasz, a right-wing print publication that is apparently going to be spared the purge that is currently unfolding in the world of pro-Fidesz newspapers, television stations and news sites, confirmed that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is looking to build a broad alternative media base to that currently offered by mogul and Fidesz oligarch Lajos Simicska, […]

by · March 26, 2015 · Politics
Federal Chancellor of Austria Werner Faymann (far left), Prime Minister  Bohuslav Sobotka of the Czech Republik, and Prime Minister of Slovakia Robert Fico in Slavkov on 29 January 2015.

A new regional alliance – without Hungary

The 25-year-old Visegrad Group, also called the Visegrad Four, is supposed to be an alliance of four Central European states – Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland andSlovakia – for the purposes of furthering European integration and advancing political, military, and economic cooperation. As it turns out the Visegrad Four is dead.  In the last couple of months it has become clear that the Visegrad Four members fundamentally disagree on how to approach […]

by · March 19, 2015 · Politics
Roundtable

Montreal’s Concordia University hosts roundtable on demise of rule of law in Hungary

Kim Lane Scheppele from Princeton University, former government minister and Central European University professor András Bozóki, and Professor Emeritus András Göllner will lead a roundtable discussion at Concordia University on Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015 at 5:30 PM, on challenges to the rule of law in Hungary under the current Orbán government. The talk will be held at 1455 de Maisonneuve […]

by · March 1, 2015 · Politics
Mr. Orbán's State of the Nation address on February 27th, 2015. Photo: Facebook.

Orbán’s state of the nation speech defiant, militant and illiberal

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán gave what was by all accounts a strongly defiant speech, in which he responded to his government’s massive defeat in a Veszprém by-election last Sunday by noting that the right just had to “fight” harder, in order to ensure that what he  thinks is an international smear campaign against his regime does not have a impact […]

by · February 27, 2015 · Politics
Zoltán Kész during a visit to Montreal in 2014. A sports enthusiast, Mr. Kész was watching a hockey game at the Bell Centre.

Opposition win in key Veszprém by-election much larger than anticipated

An unpublished Ipsos opinion poll commissioned two weeks before a critical by-election in a traditionally centre-right Veszprém riding suggested that Zoltán Kész–the independent candidate supported by most of the left-centre opposition–stood a semi-realistic chance of beating Fidesz in a constituency that it had long held. The leaked poll found that Fidesz’s candidate, Lajos Némedi, was ahead of Mr. Kész by […]

by · February 22, 2015 · Politics
Lajos Simicska

The stunning implosion of a Hungarian oligarch

It’s been an absolutely astonishing day in the world of Hungarian politics; after all, it rarely happens, that the country’s wealthiest businessman and a close friend of nearly 35 years of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is humiliated in public, and then goes on a whirlwind expletive-laden media tour, in which he repeatedly calls Mr. Orbán a prick and claims that […]

by · February 7, 2015 · Politics
Mr. Orbán and Ms. Merkel in Budapest on Monday. Photo: Parliament of Hungary

Merkel came and saw, while a giddy opposition waited with bated breath

Prime Minister Viktor Orbán didn’t have an exceptionally good day. He almost certainly could have avoided an embarrassing press conference with Chancellor Angela Merkel if only he would have taken the more pragmatic route of distancing himself from comments made last summer in Transylvania, about the possibility of turning Hungary into an illiberal democracy. Mr. Orbán was answering a question […]

by · February 3, 2015 · Politics
NYC protest

Hungarians in New York City set to protest Orbán

Hungarians in New York City are joining a series of protests against Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s authoritarian and socially unjust government, under the slogan “Spring is coming – Orbán is going.” The protest aims to draw attention to dissatisfaction with Mr. Orbán, ahead of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s official visit to Budapest on Monday. The New York protest is being held […]

by · February 1, 2015 · Politics
Colleen Bell in Budapest

Namaste, Ambassador Colleen Bell!

President Obama appointed Ms. Colleen Bell to serve as the United States’ Ambassador to Hungary and in December 2014 she was finally confirmed by the US Senate. Now she is in Budapest where she released a smart video message, sending greetings to the Hungarian people. Here is the video. She also visited the Sándor Palace where she presented her appointment letter to […]

by · January 23, 2015 · Politics