The Hungarian Government takes the view that non-governmental organisations must meet the same criteria of transparency as politics and politicians, in particular, if these organisations concern themselves with politics or issues related to politics, Government Spokesperson Zoltán Kovács told the left-wing British daily newspaper The Guardian.

In the telephone interview released in the printed edition of the newspaper on Saturday, Mr Kovács said: the criticisms levelled by the Obama Administration against the Government’s policies concerning Hungarian non-governmental organisations encumbered relations with the United States with unnecessary tensions. In the Government Spokesperson’s view, however, visibly, there is going to be a new era, and very obviously, even from Washington, there will be a different kind of opinion, a different kind of attention regarding these issues.

According to The Guardian’s commentary, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s “increasingly authoritarian behaviour” has sparked fears of an erosion of democracy in Hungary.

Mr Kovács, however, stated in the interview: Hungary has been subjected to unfounded accusations about transparency and corruption. The Government believes that from now on a more pragmatic era is going to come, and Hungary will not be measured by the double standards suggested by these accusations.

In answer to the question of why Hungary objects to the funding of non-governmental organisations from abroad, the Government Spokesperson said that this should be viewed in terms of national sovereignty. One hardly sees Central-European countries financing, say, civil groups in Britain to influence politicians, he added.

In Mr Kovács’s view, Hungarian-American billionaire investor György Soros very obviously seeks to interfere in Hungarian politics, for example, on the issue of the management of the migrant crisis.