Soros basis to give up Hungary after conflict with authorities

Hugh Fox
May 15, 2018

'It has become impossible to protect the security of our operations and our staff in Hungary, ' Open Society Foundations said.

The latest proposed legislation on nongovernmental organizations follows the passage of a 2017 law that imposed burdensome reporting requirements on Hungarian human rights and civil society groups receiving funding from overseas.

"Faced with an increasingly repressive political and legal environment in Hungary, the Open Society Foundations are moving their Budapest-based global operations and staff to the German capital, Berlin, " the group announced on Tuesday.

A loose-knit group of George Soros-financed foundations is leaving Hungary as the government's nationalist leader continues cracking down on the billionaire's influence in the country.

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The prime minister views Soros as an intruder into the country's domestic politics, which are more and more being painted by Europe's growing 2015 migrant crisis.

Patrick Gaspard, the OSF's president, mentioned the federal government has "denigrated and misrepresented our work and repressed civil society for the sake of political achieve, utilizing techniques unprecedented within the historical past of the European Union".

Soros' Open Society Foundations is shifting local staff to Berlin, the group said in a statement Tuesday.

The new legislation restricts the work of NGOs that receive foreign funding, imposing a punitive 25% overhead tax on donations.

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Hungary and Poland hold similar positions on the European Union's new budget and oppose cutting funds for the common agricultural policy, the two prime ministers said on Monday.

The building that houses the Budapest offices of the Open Society Foundations in Budapest, Hungary.

"We call on the government to sign the agreement without further delay".

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