Protests in Hungary against austerity and the new draft of constitution restricting human and democratic rights of freedom

After the big european demonstration of 9 April  in Budapest new mass protests and assemblies have marked the political atmosphere of the hungarian capital this weekend. On Friday liberal civic organisations linked with LMP (Another Policy is Possible Party) have united some 3 thousand people protesting against the weakening of democratic checks and balances planned by the rewriters of the hungarian constitution. Gay participants have raised voice against the draft, because denying the right to marriage of homosexuals, lesbians and trans, just recognising the marriage between man and woman. Roma participants have expressed their concern because the lack of minority rights in the new constitutional charter and jewish organisations had fears for the new constitution re-establishing some ideological and political values of before World War two. Saturday a stately demonstration of Policemen, Soldiers, Firefighters and customs officers have taken place against the centre-right government's austerity measures at a union rally in Budapest. Hungary's Fidesz government, which swept to power in 2010 with a two-thirds parliamentary majority, launched a package of fiscal reforms last month to keep the budget deficit in check. The measures include cutting the eligibility period for unemployment benefits, tightening disability pension rules, and abolishing early retirement to cut spending and keep the deficit below the 3 percent of GDP ceiling of the European Union. The trade unions of police, the army, firefighters, customs officers and law enforcement joined forces in a demonstration in front of the parliament building, demanding that the government keep current pension rules in place. They also want a wage rise to compensate for years of frozen wages and preserving the pensions of retired officers. The protesters marched to parliament, opened fire hydrants and used smoke bombs and sirens along the way. Parallely with this demonstration joining about 15-20 thousand people, an assembly of protest against the evictions organized by the Woman Section of the Gyula Thürmer led Workers Party have seen the participation of ideologically different social organisations and the same Hungarian Social Forum-Social Roundtable (No participation of Attac, United Left, and other far leftists.) During the night Democratic Charter group represented by the former socialist prime minister, Ferenc Gyurcsány has held a protest assembly in the City center against what they called the attempt of demolition of the Republic by the new constitutional charter. Gyurcsány hoped a mass of 20 thousand people, but he just had some 3-5 thousand sympathisants.

(endre simó)

17 April 2011


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2024-06-13 03:38