Police chief says the contract needs to be restructured to provide more transparency and flexibility for true reform
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RIP George Floyd. Your life mattered.
Hungary’s parliament has voted to end legal recognition for trans people, passing a bill that rights activists say pushes the country “back towards the dark ages”.
The new law defines gender as based on chromosomes at birth, meaning previous provisions whereby trans people could alter their gender and name on official documents will no longer be available.( Collapse )
Fears over coronavirus legislation that gives no time limit for state of emergency
Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that includes jail terms for spreading misinformation and gives no clear time limit to a state of emergency that allows the nationalist prime minister, Viktor Orbán, to rule by decree.
Parliament voted by 137 to 53 to pass the measures on Monday afternoon, with the two-thirds majority enjoyed by Orbán’s Fidesz party enough to push them through in spite of opposition from other parties, which had demanded a time limit or sunset clause on the legislation.
The bill introduces jail terms of up to five years for intentionally spreading misinformation that hinders the government response to the pandemic, leading to fears that it could be used to censor or self-censor criticism of the government response.( Collapse )
Hungarian state media bosses told staff they need permission to report on Greta Thunberg and EU politics, and banned coverage of reports from leading human rights organizations, according to internal emails obtained by POLITICO.
Editors working in state media are provided with lists of sensitive topics, and any coverage related to the issues mentioned requires staff to send draft content for approval from higher up, the internal correspondence shows. In the case of Thunberg, the Swedish climate activist, journalists were told they need permission before they even start writing, according to one email.
Journalists do not know who ultimately green-lights the articles whose subject matter is on the list, said one state media employee, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to fear of reprisal. When something gets rejected by the unknown decision-makers, senior editors sometimes euphemistically refer to it as reporting that "fell in battle," the employee said.
Hungary is currently subject to the EU's Article 7 censure procedure, triggered when the bloc's fundamental values are considered at risk in a member country. The European Parliament launched the procedure in 2018, citing media freedom as one of many issues that gave cause for alarm. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán's government has dismissed such concerns.( Collapse )
There is growing opposition in Hungary to the government's modified national curriculum, which aims to instil a spirit of national pride in school pupils.
Critics - including many schools and teachers' organisations - draw parallels with the Communist period, when the governing party imposed its own ideology.