Hungary History – Democracy

In the second half of the 1980s, the first signs of a serious crisis in the regime emerged which in the space of a few years led to the end of the communist experience. Criticism grew against Kádár, who in 1988 was replaced by K. Grósz at the head of the party, while in November the office of prime minister was attributed to the reformist Miklós Németh. During 1988, new political groups of moderate orientation were born, and in 1989 the Hungarian Socialist Party was formed from the dissolution of the Communist Party. For Hungary democracy and rights, please check

● On the international level, in the course of the 1980s, albeit within the framework of an unchanged alignment with the USSR, relations with the countries of the western bloc were further increased; in 1982 the Hungary was admitted to the World Bank and the IMF, and in the 1990s became an associate member of the European Union (1994) and joined NATO (1999). The political life of the Hungary in the 1990s, which saw the alternation of the center-right and center-left government, it was still dominated by economic issues: the rebalancing of the state financial structure, the stabilization of the currency, the modernization of the productive apparatus occurred, in fact, such as the priority objectives. On 1 May 2004, the EU, together with 10 other states, joined the EU. In 2005, Parliament appointed a center-right president, L. Sólyom, while the 2006 elections were won by the Socialist Party, then defeated in 2010, when the vote brought the leader of the Fidesz party, V. Orbán back to the head of the government. , former President of the Council between 1998 and 2002. On the wave of the riots in the streets that agitated many countries in 2011, Orbán’s conservative policy has been the subject of bitter challenges due to the restrictions on freedom of expression imposed by the institution of a media control authority, which provides heavy interference on television, radio, press and internet content. New protests against the authoritarian drift initiated by Orbán arose in January 2012 after the approval of a new Constitution, which envisages, among other things, the adoption for the country of the new name of “Hungary” to replace “Republic of Hungary. “, limitations to the powers of the Constitutional Court and to the indebtedness of the State, as well as ethical rules and prohibitions, such as the protection of the life of the fetus from conception, the promotion of the family and the prohibition of certain biomedical practices. The autarchic line followed by Orbán has effectively discouraged foreign investments, subjecting the country to very heavy financial repercussions, aggravated by repeated conflicts with the European Monetary Fund which risk preventing access to now indispensable economic support. A serious blow to the public image of the premier also resulted from the pressing accusations of plagiarism that in April 2012 forced the President of the Republic P. Schmitt to resign, a person indicated by the ultra-conservative party and by the premier himself to cover the maximum institutional position, which he had assumed in August 2010; in May 2012, J. Áder. In the legislative elections held in April 2014, Orbán’s Fidesz party managed to be reconfirmed in power, albeit with a slight decline in support (44.4% against 52.7% in 2010) and in turnout (61 %, about 3% less than in previous consultations); the second party in the country was the Democratic Coalition Alliance (25%), while the extreme right of the Jobbik party obtained 20.7% of the votes, with a net increase compared to 16.7% in 2010. In April 2018 Fidesz received over 49% of the votes, confirming Orbán in power for the third consecutive term; the politician also clearly established himself in the European elections held in May of the following year, in which the Fidesz party was the first in the country, obtaining 52.

In foreign policy, tensions with the European Union and with neighboring countries arose in 2015 on the occasion of the immigration emergency that led the government of Budapest to erect defensive barriers on its southern borders; on the issue, in October 2016 the conservative government of Orbán launched a referendum against EU quotas for the redistribution of refugees; held in October, however, the consultation did not reach a quorum, with 43.42% of those entitled to vote. Due to the further tightening of Orbán’s markedly sovereign policy, supported by the right-wing government in various European countries, in September 2018 the European Parliament approved by a large majority (448 votes in favor, 197 against and 48 abstentions) the application of Article 7 of the Lisbon Treaty which sanctions cases of violation of the rule of law. A clear authoritarian change occurred in March 2020, coinciding with the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic, when Parliament approved the state of emergency indefinitely with 138 votes in favor and 53 against, giving Orbán extraordinary powers, granting him the power to govern on the basis of decrees, to close the Parliament itself, to modify or suspend existing laws and to prevent the holding of new elections; the repressive drift, which culminated in June 2021 with the approval of a bill presented by Orbán’s Fidesz party, which prohibits LGBT + associations from disseminating information on homosexuality.

Hungary History - Democracy