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Six Hungarian opposition parties from across the political spectrum held the country’s first national primary contest in order to choose the joint candidates who will take on the country’s long-serving and increasingly autocratic prime minister Viktor Orbán and his Fidesz party in the next parliamentary elections in 2022. Andrea Virág, Director of strategy at Republikon Institute, presents key takeaways from the Hungarian opposition primaries.

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In the past few years, there have been significant changes over the Hungarian media market, more and more media outlets are owned by government-friendly companies, often spreading misinformation to serve political agendas. Viktor Orbán’s regime in Hungary led to the centralization of several public sectors in order to secure its power over the past decade.

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Once front-runners of democracy in the CEE region, Hungary and Poland have become the most prominent cases of democratic backsliding in the EU. The two countries are famous for their centuries-old friendship (…). While their governing parties and populist leaders are careful to strengthen their friendship, the divisive rhetoric of Fidesz-KDNP and Law and Justice (PiS) managed to excavate the gap among their own people.

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Human rights enforcement at the international and at the regional level is difficult, since it is mostly up to individual states to decide which rules they implement within their boundaries. Furthermore, coming up with rights that are universal in nature is a difficult task, therefore, legal documents tend to be rather general when dealing with this topic.

Globalization

Globalization is an integral part of everyday life. However, so called “hyper-globalization” challenges national interest in favour of deeper integration. Academics debate what values governments should prioritize and how they should interact with the international community. Countries can either sacrifice too much to find a place in the world economy or may focus wrongly on domestic public opinion alone.