In response to the news that the European Commission is to begin infringement proceedings to hold Hungary to account for its law stigmatising non-governmental organisations (NGOs) receiving funding from abroad, Iverna McGowan, Director of the Amnesty International, European Institutions Office said:
“Hungary’s NGO law was designed to stigmatize and vilify NGOs. Today’s action from the European Commission sends a strong signal that such onslaughts against civil society are not acceptable in the European Union.”
“Amnesty International will not comply with the law unless compelled to do so by a court. It is in flagrant violation of EU law and the fundamental right to freedom of association. Hungary must drop the law before it causes further damage to civil society and the valuable services they provide to Hungarian society.”
The deadline for “foreign funded” NGOs registration was 12 July 2017. Amnesty International Hungary’s membership has decided not to comply with the registration requirement; instead the organization is submitting a constitutional appeal.