The Open Society Foundation (OSF) of US billionaire George Soros announced Monday that it had filed a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights because of the measures taken by Budapest to hinder its humanitarian activities in Hungary.
This decision came after the adoption of a set of laws entitled ‘Stop Soros’ in June, hitting NGOs helping migrants with a 25% tax on their income and threatening them iwth a one-year imprisonment for assisting illegal entry into Hungary.
The organization believes that these laws contravene European conventions on freedom of speech and association, and expose ‘a whole range of legitimate activities to the risk of criminal prosecution’.
The OSF, which funds many NGOs in Hungary and around the world, announced in August that its regional headquarters would be moved from Budapest to Berlin, denouncing the ‘repressive’ measures introduced by Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
In an unprecedented vote with a strong symbolic meaning, the European Parliament activated Article 7 on 12 September, which could lead to sanctions against Hungary, notably for its attacks on the EU’s values of civil liberties and migrants’ rights.