“Back in the late 1990s, a group of Serbian dissidents, independent journalists and the opposition fled Slobodan Milošević’s dictatorial regime to Hungary. In an open-air tavern under the Buda castle, we dreamt of a democratic Serbia. Ironically, it was Viktor Orbán’s government that offered us refuge and a free space to work toward democratic change back home.

Since then the world has turned upside down. Within a month, Orbán’s government is expected to table a set of laws authorizing police raids on any organizations or activists deemed a threat by the ministry of internal affairs. The ministry will be able to shut down those it disagrees with. The move caps off a two-year campaign of publicly vilifying critical NGOs, activists that offer support to migrants, and my own organization, Open Society Foundations.

As a result, we were forced to announce that our international operations in Budapest will move to Berlin. Hungarian civil society is to be muzzled, like the Hungarian press before it. In this latest assault on dissenting voices, the courts will be bypassed altogether.” (PoliticoEU)