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US Ambassador receives judges again

November 17th, 2023

The main pro-government daily carries two columns lambasting the US Ambassador after he received leading figures of the National Juridical Council. They condemn Ambassador Pressman even more sharply than after the first such meeting a year ago (see BudaPost, November 3, 2022).

In a short note on his X (former Twitter) page on Monday, the US Ambassador wrote that he discussed with the judges ’their continued work to advance the National Judicial Council’s independence and the Council’s critical role in Hungary’s judicial system’.

In the first of the two Magyar Nemzet articles on the meeting, Zsolt Bayer describes Mr Pressman as someone who ’came to Hungary as a viceroy rather than an ambassador’ and accuses him of interfering in all kinds of internal affairs, including Hungary’s cultural policies and international relations, in addition to the judiciary. And that will remain this way, he writes, ‘until we send this unbearable, impertinent, junk, unscrupulous miserable man to hell’.

In a very similar vein, Magyar Nemzet’s Tamás Pilhál writes that the two leaders of the ‘liberal debating society called the Juridical Council’ were ‘summoned’ to the US Embassy by ‘the viceroy’ to instruct them on how to be even more independent – ‘first of all from Hungary’, the country that pays them. He interprets the ambassador’s description of the meeting as a threat meaning that unless Hungary conforms with US expectations, new anti-government demonstrations and even a coup d’état may follow.



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