Political scientist Zoltán Vörös: “In Hungary, not the parliament but media and civil society are at stake”

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Political Scientist Zoltán Vörös answered Özge Somlyai-Çakır’s questions. According to Vörös, “Hungarian government is playing a political game and the EU has a lot to learn from the panic created by this pandemic in Europe”. Vörös states that there is more to worry about in Hungary than the strength of parliament such as weakening of the opposition and civil society in the country.

On the 11th of March, Hungarian government declared a state of emergency for 15 days with the purpose of taking emergency measures against the spread of coronavirus within the country. According to the official information shared online, here are now 261 cases of coronavirus, 10 people died because of the virus, and 28 people responded the treatment, and recovered.

On the 20th of March, Hungarian government submitted a law draft which proposes extension of the state of emergency until further notice. On the 24th of March, the ruling FIDESZ party brought it to the attention of the parliament and demanded urgent extension of the state of emergency, but the opposition parties did not support the idea. Now the government is expected to submit the bill to the parliament once again at an ordinary setting next week. 

Since FIDESZ party under the leadership of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has the majority in the parliament, the bill will most likely pass. What does this mean? What awaits Hungary? How should we evaluate the current situation when it comes to preserving democracy in Hungary, and more importantly in Europe?

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