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New briefing paper by the Hungarian Helsinki Committee and Amnesty International Hungary on the constitutional crisis in the Hungarian judiciary. The paper outlines key developments since January 2018, both regarding the ordinary court system and the prospect of the new administrative courts. We also make recommendations to resolve the crisis.

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The general prohibition of residing on public premises for habitation was placed on constitutional level after the amendment of the Fundamental Law in 2018. The Act on Misdemeanors was also amended in October 2018. After the new law came into effect, homeless people disappeared from Budapest underpasses, and a few  misdemeanor proceedings, starting with demonstrative police confinements were launched countrywide.

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This June the Parliament will elect the President of the new Supreme Administrative Court, who will have extremely wide powers over judges and cases concerning a range of issues from taxation to human rights. But legislation allows that someone with zero days of judicial experience may be elected without any professional screening.

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Hungary started to deprive of food some third-country nationals detained in the transit zones started in August 2018. After 5 such cases successfully challenged by the HHC with obtaining interim measures from the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), the Hungarian Immigration and Asylum Office (IAO) promised in August 2018 to discontinue this practice and provide food to all asylum-seekers in the transit zone.

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How? Did you know that if you live and pay taxes in Hungary you can offer 1% of your annual income tax to a public benefit organisation? This offers crucial support to civil society and important, life-changing causes.   Why supporting us? The Hungarian Helsinki Committee is a leading human rights organisation in Central Europe.

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Vote! If you are an EU citizen and live in Hungary, you can choose to vote for Hungarian candidates. The 21 Members of the European Parliament representing Hungary vote on laws about healthcare, environmental matters, studying across the EU, and many other important issues. These decisions will affect your life right here, in Hungary, and by voting here you can express your opinion.

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The Hungarian Helsinki Committee and Amnesty International Hungary organised an international conference titled "The rule of law and the independence of the judiciary in Hungary and in Europe – trends, concerns, ways ahead" on 25 January 2019. The conference was organised to discuss fundamental changes in the Hungarian judiciary regarding the setting up of new administrative courts.

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