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Egyutt party says defacing anti-Soros gov’t posters legitimate political demonstration

The opposition Együtt (Together) party embarked on removing the government's posters depicting Hungarian-American speculator and philanthropist George Soros from billboards in several districts of Budapest, as they feel the campaign against the financier qualifies as hate-mongering.

The party registered the tearing up of posters with the police as demonstrations, and according to the practice of Hungarian courts, these acts are within the limits of the freedom of expression. However, Együtt may have to compensate the advertising companies in case those decide to sue for damages, reports Index.hu.
The first poster-tearing demonstration took place in Budapest's District XVI on July 9 with about 40 participants. Együtt's local council member Zoltán Vajda said the ones who tear up the hate breeding posters represent the four-fifth of society, who did not participate in the government's so-called "national consultation", which had been said to have given the empowerment for the "Don't let Soros have the last laugh" campaign. The next event was held last Wednesday in South Buda (District XI), where György Kóber, Együtt's local leader stressed that special attention was being paid not to damage the billboard while removing the anti-Soros posters. Four more demonstrations were held in four other Budapest districts over last week.
A working group of the Supreme Court (Kúria) also opined that tearing up political posters counts as part of free expression after analysing the ruling made by eight different courts. All these rulings cleared the defendants from charges of causing damage by removing political posters, citing freedom of expression as reason. Still, the advertising company that put up the posters may decide to sue for compensation, although it has stated such an intention so far in this case.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 July 2017 17:25

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