Mon, 22 July 2024


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The AEJ, a professional association of journalists in over 20 countries including Hungary, urgently calls on the Hungarian authorities not to enact the Media Law that was passed by the Parliament on 22 December, and is currently scheduled to become law on 1 January 2011. The government there must heed the many well-founded protests from across Europe. In its present form the law is incompatible with European standards of protection of free expression and media freedom. Its provisions and penalties are too sweeping, and the supervisory Media Council is clearly not impartial as it is dominated by pro-government appointees. The Hungarian government has not only sought to override the objections of all the political opposition forces at home. Its intention to enact this legislation is also in flagrant violation of its obligations as an EU member state. As Hungary prepares to take on the responsibilities of the rotating EU presidency from January the government must halt the process of enacting the law, or lose credibility as a member state fit to represent the European Union and steer its programme of activities in the first half of 2011.

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