Takis Pappas, visiting scholar at the Central European University made a presentation entitled "What do the people distrust when they decide to trust populism?" on 8 February 2017.

  • 20170208 191102Takis Pappas, András Schweitzer, Erik Uszkiewicz, Fanni Bársony, Zsuzsanna Végh
  • 20170208 191250Takis Pappas, Mustár dog

A Dramatic Year

On 28 December 2016, HES held its traditional annual workshop where HES members made presentations to HES members. The following lectures were given at the event: Ernő Simon (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees): Better Protecting Refugees in the EU and Globally, Petra Jeney (European Institute for Public Administration): Some Legal Aspects of Brexit from an EU Perspective, Attila Bartha (HAS Centre for Social Sciences Institute for Political Science): Can Populist Economic Policy Be Successful? 

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    Imre Koncz, Jerzy Celichowski, Orsolya Zámbó, Krisztina Stump, Gábor Erőss, Emese Lafferton, Emma Gothár, András Radnóti, Ernő Simon, Dorka Mező, Zsófia Stahl
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    Ernő Simon
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    Zsuzsanna Végh
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    Györgyi Kocsis, Petra Jeney
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    Krisztina Stump, Emese Lafferton, Anita Bakos, Zsófia Stahl
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    Györgyi Kocsis, Attila Bartha
  • IMG 7033Ádám Szuly
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    István Hegedűs, Kinga Szuly, Mustár

Declaration of the Hungarian Europe Society on the Judgement of Fidel Castro

The Hungarian Europe Society (HES) has been witnessing with great bewilderment and concern, that the European Commission has refrained from referring to Fidel Castro, following his passing, as what he really was: a dictator. We are expressing our outrage at the statement of European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, who stated “With the death of Fidel Castro, the world has lost a man who was a hero for many” and whose legacy will be judged by history. Federica Mogherini, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission wrote: “Fidel Castro was a man of determination and an historical figure.”

We believe that there is no need to wait for the judgement of history. We know that Fidel Castro and his communist single-party system were responsible for the massacre of several tens of thousands of people since he came to power in 1959. His regime incarcerated thousands of Christians, civil activists and LGBT people besides the members of the political opposition in prisons and work camps, and the regime violated the basic civil liberties, such as the rights to freedom of speech and opinion, as well as the freedom of assembly. The human rights situation in Cuba is very dire up to this day: according to information from the opposition, this year alone six thousand people were arrested for political reasons. We firmly believe that not even the death of Castro is a good enough reason to keep silent and relativise the crimes of the Cuban communist regime. Doing so undermines the historical significance of the Central and Eastern European region and denigrates the sacrifices of the many millions of victims to the communist regime. 

Our concern is heightened by the fact that the statements from the EU leadership following the death of Fidel Castro come at a time when it would be the absolute duty of the European Commission to stand up to those member states (Hungary, Poland) that at this very moment are questioning the basic values of liberal democracies and are putting efforts into dismantling the system of checks and balances. The President of the European Commission bares a political responsibility to protect our common European values and human rights, thus cannot allow himself such declarations. There is a real risk for the European Union to lose credibility if it doesn’t stand up incontestably against existing or developing dictatorships, whereas it stands for human rights and democratic values on the global stage. The Hungarian Europe Society therefore endorses the statement made by the European Commissioner of Trade Cecilia Malmström, who declared: “Fidel Castro was a dictator who oppressed his people for 50 years”, and remarked that she found it strange to hear all the tributes. 

We express our hope that Cuba, following a peaceful and successful transition will soon join the community of democratic States. 

2 December 2016

Who Benefits from a Federal Europe?

László Bruszt, Visiting Professor at the Scuola Normale Superiore, Florence, made a presentation on 3 November 2016.

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    László Bruszt, István Hegedűs
  • IMG 8889András Radnóti, Zsófia Vidák, Zsuzsanna Végh, Andrea Zsiga-Kiss, Emese Lafferton, Kinga Szurday, Orsolya Zámbó, Tamás Fóti, László Bruszt, István Hegedűs, Nóra Hegedűs, Kinga Szuly, Mustár

Blaming the Migrants in the Eastern Part of the EU

The final report entitled "The Response of the Visegrad Countries to the Refugee Crisis" was completed by the Hungarian Europe Society at the end of September 2016. The authors are István Hegedűs, Györgyi Kocsis, Kata Nagy, András Schweitzer, Zsófia Stahl, Erzsébet Strausz, Erik Uszkiewicz, Zsuzsanna Végh, Zsófia Vidák as well as Alena Krempaska, Christian Kvorning Lassen and Peter Weisenbacher. The project was supported by the Friedrich Naumann Foundation für die Freiheit.

Individual papers for the report:

István Hegedűs: Political Games in an „Illiberal Democracy” During the Refugee Crisis

Györgyi Kocsis, Kata Nagy: Responses of the Visegrad 4 Countries to the Current European Migrant Crisis. First Lessons of an Expert Survey

Alena Krempaska, Peter Weisenbacher: The Refugee Crisis and the Reaction of the Visegrad Countries. Government Policies in National Contexts - Slovakia

Christian Kvorning Lassen: The Czech Republic and the Refugee Crisis

András Schweitzer: Strangers and the Strange Lands – Cultural Roots of the East Central European “Compassion Deficit”

Zsófia Stahl, Zsófia Vidák: Refugees of the Recent “Migrant Crisis” in the Visegrad Group Countries - Cultural and Legal Aspects

Zsuzsanna VéghRefugee and Migration Crisis through the Visegrad Lens One Year in Review

Timeline of most notable events related to the European migrant crisis
April 2015 – May 2016