Hungary Takes Action Against Soros-Funded NGOs

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Hungarian officials are set to take legislative action against non-governmental organizations (NGO) funded by foreign backers, such as mega-donor and political activist George Soros, after President-elect Trump takes office.

Szilard Nemeth, vice president of the ruling Fidesz party, told Bloomberg reporters on Tuesday that the European Union will use “all the tools at its disposal” to “sweep out” NGOs funded by Soros, citing that they “serve global capitalists and back political correctness over national governments.”

Nemeth said that since Trump will occupy the White House “there is an opportunity for this, internationally.”

The Hungarian government is planning to force non-governmental organization leaders to declare their personal assets in the same way as members of Parliament and public officials, in what has been described as an “intimidation” of civil society, reports The Guardian.

Lawmakers are set to discuss a bill proposal for auditing NGO executives which is scheduled to go before parliament in April, according to their 2017 agenda.

This legislative move is slated to be the latest step in a campaign by Viktor Orbán, the first prime minister to back Trump, intended to transform Hungary into a self-described “illiberal state.” Orbán’s campaign has prompted much criticism internationally, chiefly from the European Commission and the Obama administration.

Orbán ordered a probe on foundations financed by Norway and claimed that civil society groups financed from foreign backers were covers for “paid political activists.”

Bloomberg reported that Orban’s administration has frequently singled out NGOs supported by Soros, a known supporter of Democratic candidates like Hillary Clinton, with “a wide network of organizations that promote democracy in formerly communist eastern Europe.”

Trump has vocalized his concern about Soros being a key part of “a global power structure that is responsible for the economic decisions that have robbed our working class, stripped our country of its wealth, and put that money into the pockets of a handful of large corporations and political entities,” as previously reported by Bloomberg.

Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán

Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán

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