Today the European Court of Human Rights concluded Hungary was in breach of the European Convention on Human Rights due to the premature termination of the Hungarian Supreme Court’s President’s mandate in early 2012. The judgment confirms concerns of the HHC, the HCLU and the Eötvös Károly Institute that Mr Baka’s dismissal violated the independence of the judiciary, and was a further step in weakening the rule of law in Hungary.
Today constitutional democracy is shrinking in Hungary. Rule of law institutions, which normally should protect the rights of the individual against the state are less and less able to fulfill this objective. Using its two-third majority in Parliament, the government has dismantled, weakened or conquered these institutions to protect its power instead of the rights of the citizens.
The Hungarian government provided detailed comments on the so-called Tavares Report regarding the situation of fundamental rights in Hungary, which will soon be discussed by Members of the European Parliament. The Hungarian Civil Liberties Union (HCLU) the Hungarian Helsinki Committee (HHC) and the Standards (Mérték) Media Monitor responded to the government’s inaccurate and unfounded comments in an analysis submitted to the factions of the European Parliament.
According to the Eötvös Károly Institute, the Hungarian Helsinki Committee and the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union, the Constitutional Court’s decision to hear the President of the National Judicial Office behind closed doors undermines the transparency of decision-making by a public office, the right to freedom of information and the principle of fair trial.
The delegation of the European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission), the Council of Europe’s advisory body on constitutional matters, has visited Hungary with the mandate to reexamine and reevaluate the Fourth Amendment to the Fundamental Law of Hungary and its potential consequences.