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The state of press freedom in Hungary

December 25th, 2013

A right-wing columnist lambasts a video clip on censorship by the organization Reporters Without Borders, and suggests that despite all the controversies around media freedom in Hungary, it is ridiculous to liken PM Orbán to authoritarian dictators.

In a video clip by the international media watchdog Reporters Without Borders published online with the aim of drawing attention to the importance of independent media reporting, Hungary’s PM Viktor Orbán is featured alongside Kim-Jong Un, Robert Mugabe, Ilham Aliyev, Vladimir Putin, and Bashar Al-Assad.

The video clip is indeed a timely reminder how scarce honest and independent reporting has become, Jobbegyenes comments. “There are a lot of problems with the government controlled public media in Hungary. But likening the indeed embarrassing System of National Cooperation (the government’s definition of its own régime, used now mainly by critics in a sarcastic mood) to bloodthirsty dictators and mass murderers is a good example of the very simplistic propaganda that Reporters Without Borders claims to fight”, the right-wing blogger notes. In an aside, the author of Jobbegyenes wonders why US President Barack Obama and UK Premier David Cameron are missing from the film. After all, President Obama has also been accused of manipulating reports on chemical weapons in Syria, while the wife of the journalist who revealed the Snowden documents was harassed by the UK authorities.

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