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Párbeszéd Challenges Gov’t Regulation for ‘Restricting Right to Assembly’

MTI-Hungary Today 2021.03.27.

A board member of opposition Párbeszéd has turned to the Constitutional Court over a government regulation which the party says is restricting the right to assembly “using the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse”.

Speaking at an online press conference on Saturday, Gábor Erőss, also a deputy district mayor in Budapest, referred to a regulation introduced under the special legal order by the government last November which bans demonstrations.

He said he had prepared the appeal he submitted to the top court on the basis of the Hungarian Helsinki Committee’s legal complaint over the government regulation banning any demonstration without allowing even the option of filing a request for permission to authorities.

Erőss noted that Párbeszéd had sought to organize a demonstration in protest against the “privatization” of universities, “government graft” and the “robbing of local governments of their funds”, among other issues.

“The government has not allowed any kind of demonstration to be held since November, not even those at which social distancing and mask-wearing rules would have been observed,” he said.

Heated Speeches at Anti-Lockdown Protests of March 15
Heated Speeches at Anti-Lockdown Protests of March 15

Hundreds of people protested Hungary’s lockdown restrictions on Monday at various locations. While the far-right Mi Hazánk party began its demonstrations in front of the Tropicana Casino on Vigadó Street, coronavirus skeptic vlogger György Gődény and libertarian politician Áron Ecsenyi’s followers protested in front of the parliament. Due to the unlawful gatherings, Budapest police charged […]Continue reading

He said that “the right to assembly is one of the most important fundamental constitutional rights which is guaranteed […] even by the Basic Law adopted by two-thirds of MPs of [ruling] Fidesz”, adding that the party was asking the top court “to give people back the freedom of assembly”.

Featured photo illustration by Zsolt Szigetváry/MTI