The Freedom House report published on 22 June 2015, according to which the peak of the past ten years was 2006, paints a false picture of Hungarian democracy.
One of the main and returning points of criticism concerning Hungary is its electoral system. Last year’s elections prove that our electoral system works well and reflects voters’ will. During 2014, elections held in differing electoral systems demonstrated that it is not the system that determines the result, but the voters themselves. By-elections also reinforced this fact.
In relation to the opinion put forward about the country’s court system, we wish to draw the attention of Freedom House to the EU Justice Scoreboard published in March 2015, which showcases the quality, independence and efficiency of the justice system and which – in European comparison – paints a totally opposite picture.
In connection with the frequently mentioned media legislation, it is worth mentioning that not a single case has been brought before the European Court of Human Rights, in addition to which both Secretary General of the Council of Europe Mr. Thorbjørn Jagland and the Venice Commission have acknowledged the progressive development achieved in this field.
Contrary to the statement of Freedom House, the Hungarian Government both perceives and takes effective action to support disadvantaged social groups. The main tools of these efforts are triggering economic growth, stopping inflation, creating jobs and public catering for children.
Another thing that puts into question Freedom House’s assessment is the fact that on the basis of their ratings, with relation to the calculation of which the methodology part of the report does not provide adequate information, the peak of the past ten years from the point of democracy was 2006. According to the organisation, Hungarian democracy was the most stable when police repeatedly used unlawful violence against opposition demonstrators, and again in 2007 and 2008. Several police officers were convicted of unlawful acts and criminal proceedings against their commanders are still ongoing, while the government of the time praised them and the Municipality of Budapest honoured them for their actions.
The Government of Hungary is ready and open to all discussions concerning democracy and human rights, and accordingly to contribute to the development of a true picture of the country.
(Ministry of Justice)