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Media war in Poland

December 29th, 2023

Opinions in Hungary regarding efforts by the new Polish government to remove the management of the public media company are sharply divided.

In Poland, the Minister of Culture has put the state Media company into liquidation, after President Duda vetoed the company’s budget. The President, who belongs to the former government majority, did so after the Minister – illegally, in his opinion – removed the general manager. The new parliamentary majority accuses the previous government of having subjugated the public media and staffed it with reporters from its own ranks. 

In Népszava, Tamás Rónay writes that illiberal governments tend to bring the public media under their political control as early as possible. In Hungary and in Poland, he remarks, they managed to do so without serious problems, while in Slovenia the previous majority encountered fierce resistance. The legal battle surrounding the attempts of the new Polish government to extricate the public media from the control of the previous parliamentary majority suggest to him that Poland is in for a tough and lasting media war.

Hirado.hu, the Hungarian public media news site condemns the steps taken by the new Polish government, and accuses the Minister of Culture of disregarding Poland’s constitution. Hirado.hu quotes an interim verdict issued by the Constitutional Court barring the government from putting media companies into bankruptcy procedures, pending its verdict on the legality of the government’s moves.

Origo describes the latest events in Poland as an attempt by the new Polish government to forcibly bring the public media under its own control. ‘Left-wing violence rages on in Poland’, runs its headline.


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