More NGOs on the “foreign-agent” list supported by government than by Soros

October 12, 2017

Anikó Lévai as the Hungarian Interchurch Aid’s Goodwill Ambassador Photo: segelyszervezet.hu

Some 53 NGOs have registered themselves as “foreign-funded” to date, out of which only 10 have any connection to the Open Society Foundation’s George Soros, while many on the list have a good relationship with the government, Heti Válasz publication reports.

The list currently contains 20 NGOs that are either endorsed, supported or favored by the Hungarian government. These include the Hungarian Red Cross, the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta, Hungarian Baptist Aid and Hungarian Interchurch Aid, whose latest good-service ambassador is Anikó Lévai, wife of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. All these NGOs are part of the government’s so-called Charity Council.

The list also includes the Robert Schuman Institute, a partner of Fidesz’s party foundation, the Csányi Foundation for Children endorsed by the Prime Minister and the Regional Centre for Energy Policy Research (REKK) Foundation, run by Fidesz founding member Péter Kaderják.

Some Christian organizations include:

  • Bread of Life Foundation
  • Hungarian Evangelical Radio Foundation
  • Louis-Lucien Rochat Foundation
  • Sunday School Association
  • Word of Life Hungary

Even official partners of government ministries landed on the foreign-funded list:

  • Association of Conscious Buyers (supported by numerous ministries)
  • Hungarian Food Bank Association (supported by the Ministry of Human Resources)
  • Hungarian Association of Talent Relief Organizations (endorsed by Minister of Human Resources Zoltán Balog).
  • Junior Achievement Hungary (endorsed by Minister of National Economy Mihály Varga)
  • Egyesek Youth Association (supported by the Ministry of Human Resources)
  • Anonymous Ways Foundation (supported by the Ministry of Interior)
  • Reflex Environmental Protection Association (member of the National Sustainable Development Council)

The list also contains the Hungarian office of the World Wildlife Fund for Nature, Rex Dog Shelter Foundation, Clean Air Action Group, Bátor Tábor Foundation organizing camps for seriously ill children and their families, and SOS Children’s Villages Hungary, which cares for children requiring foster care. Heti Válasz (Weekly Answer) cynically notes that these NGOs must all pose a serious threat to Hungary.

Parliament’s ruling Fidesz-KDNP majority passed the controversial NGO-stigmatizing law that obliges NGOs receiving funding from abroad to register themselves with a court as being “foreign funded.” Since the adoption of the law, many NGOs vowed not to do so. Others decided to obey the law for fear of government reprisals that could endanger their operation.

Due to the law’s discriminatory nature, Hungary is under an infringement procedure initiated by the European Commission in July.