Hungarians Protest Against Corruption, Seek PM Orban’s Resignation

EU | November 18, 2014, Tuesday // 12:56|  views

Demonstrators gather on the Kossuth Square in front of the Hungarian Parliament building during an anti-goverment demonstration in Budapest, Hungary, 17 November 2014. Photo EPA/BGNES

Thousands of Hungarians took to the streets of Budapest on Monday to protest against Prime Minister Viktor Orban and the government, the BBC reported.

Demonstrators demanded Orban’s resignation, accusing him of being too close to Russia and employing corrupt officials.

The protest, called “public outrage day”, brought 10,000 demonstrators to the streets of Hungary’s capital, according to local media reports. Similar protests were held in at least 20 other Hungarian cities as well as Berlin, Stockholm and London.

Demonstrators called on Orban to resign and demanded the ousting of six government officials, including the head of tax authority Ildiko Vida, who have been accused of corruption, the BBC said.

The demonstration in front of Hungary’s Parliament was sparked by anger over Orban's refusal to dismiss Vida, who has been denied entrance into the US because of suspected corruption.Last month thousands of Hungarians successfully rallied against a proposed internet tax.

Orban’s centre-right Fidesz party commands a two-thirds majority in Parliament that rarely contradicts him, which gives grounds to some of his critics to accuse him of becoming authoritarian. His pivot toward Russia over the last few years has provoked fears among Hungarians, many of whom want deeper involvement in the European Union.

Orban denied wrongdoing by his government, rejecting accusations of involvement in corruption. “Is it appropriate to label a mafia a government coalition which has earned voters’ trust?”, Orban said in Parliament on Monday.

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Tags: Hungary, Orban, protests, demonstrators, Fidesz, corruption


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