Hungarian Government Aiming To Block Opposition Protests?

  • 19 Jan 2012 9:50 AM
Hungarian Government Aiming To Block Opposition Protests?
"The government is said to be aiming to block all opposition protests in downtown Budapest on March 15, a national holiday in Hungary. The government has forestalled any opposition demonstrations in the capital on Wednesday March 15 by reserving Budapest’s entire downtown area for that day.

The Administration and Justice Ministry and Budapest city council have been granted permits to occupy public areas for the entire week surrounding the national holiday.

Moreover, the request from the ministry suggests that the permits to occupy the major downtown public spaces will also be valid in 2013 and 2014.

The Facebook group One Million for Press Freedom in Hungary had earlier announced plans for a large-scale rally on March 15.

The same group caught many by surprise by motivating tens of thousands at its first rally on March 15 of last year.

The group requested a permit for a demonstration on the Pest side of the Erzsébet Bridge, where last year’s rally was held, but police have not granted the request. Instead, the city council has reserved the bridge for the entire day to hold a ceremony marking the 1848 revolution.

The government has reserved Kossuth tér and its environs, Múzeum körút, Kálvin tér, Ferenciek tere, the National Theatre and the Palace of Arts, Bajcsy-Zsilinszky út, the Buda side of the Erzsébet bridge and Horváth kert in Buda.

The city has reserved Heroes Square and Andrássy út, Deák tér, Blaha Lujza tér and Clark Ádám tér.

The ministry argues that it must reserve areas for two years in advance because it is a feature of national programmes that they are held in the same place every year."

Source: Hungary Around the Clock

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