According to the event’s Facebook page, thirteen thousand people gathered in the center of Budapest on Tuesday to hear speeches and march to the parliament to show their displeasure with the current Fidesz government.
People were encouraged before the protest to show up with Hungarian and European Union flags. Those who turned up to the protest brought flags, signs against the Fidesz government and plenty of patience in the winter cold. The march went from József Nádor Square via the banks of the Danube river to the Parliament. People chanted slogans against Fidesz, corruption, for democracy and the EU.
Once at the Kossuth Square in front of the Parliament people were met by a major force of riot police. The police made sure to document the protest and had several video cameras with them.
Protesters chanted “where is the EU flag?”. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán had the flag removed from the Parliament’s facade and replaced it with the Székely flag of the Székely region in Romania.
After the protest was officially over, a smaller number of people stayed at the square, and confronted the police forces. Two people sustained head injuries, and others were fired with paprika spray by the police.
Several users have started posting videos on YouTube from the protest in Budapest. We present you some of them:
While thousands of protestors gathered in Budapest in front of the national assembly, they were joined by fellow compatriots in the cities of Pécs, Debrecen and Sopron among others.
Hungarian tv-station ATV reported of hundreds of people demonstrating in cities around Hungary. Events have also been organized on Facebook for London, Bristol, Berlin, Stockholm and Brussels.
A large number of riot police was sent out to meet the several thousand protesters that have gathered outside of the Hungarian parliament to show their dissatisfaction with the current political situation, corrupt public servants, taxation and the foreign policies of the ruling Fidesz party writes hvg.hu.
The demonstration in Budapest started at 18:00 local time and among others András Horváth, the former NAV (Hungarian Tax and Financial Control Administration) employee who warned about the VAT fraud practices of the NAV, held a speech to the crowd.
The Fidesz regime has made sure to remove as many EU symbols as possible from the parliament building. While it is a custom that all public offices in the European Union use both the national and EU flags, they removed it from the facade of the building earlier this year. In addition, the speaker of the parliament told today to remove the EU flag from the plenary room. The crowd protesting outside the parliament this evening shouted “where is the flag, where is the flag?”. A policeman tried to take the flag away from a protestor who waived it above their head, but the crowd chanted “don’t touch the flag, don’t touch the flag” and the policeman let go of the flag.
People also chanted “Ria, Ria, Norvégia” a play on the chant used on sports events, “Ria, Ria, Hungária”, referring to the ongoing series of disputes Norway has with the Hungarian government.
Recent protest have included EU and Norwegian flags.
Over twenty thousand people have on Facebook signaled that they will attend the demonstration named the “Public Day of Outcry” in front of the Hungarian Parliament, reports hvg.hu
The organizers of the demonstration ask people to join the protests against state corruption, over taxation of people and the foreign policies of the current government. In several towns in Hungary people have gathered to show their dissatisfaction with the status quo.
It’s been reported that over five hundred people gathered in Sopron, three hundred in Debrecen.
Also abroad, from London, Luxembourg and Bristol to Stockholm and Berlin, there have been demonstrations to show how they feel about the situation in Hungary.
The Hungarian parliament has removed all of the EU flags in the plenary room, according to hvg.hu.
This was done of instructions from the speaker of the parliament, Lászlo Kövér, who said that this is the plenary room of the Hungarian parliament. The ruling Fidesz regime has already removed the EU flag from front of the parliament building, replacing it with a Hungarian one.
The Hungarian Broadcasting Corporation reported of a number of events on it’s radio news Wednesday morning, except for a demonstration that was so large that the whole Elisabeth Bridge was covered with people.
In their Wednesday morning newsbroadcasts, two of the largest public broadcasting radio stations Petöfi and Kossuth didn’t mention last nights demonstrations by a single word. Their coverage was focused on how the government has benefited the people with tax benefits for families, shorter ques in public healthcare and the collection of firewood for those in need. The public broadcaster did mention on it’s TV news the demonstration of last night, where tens of thousand of people marched in Budapest and in other parts of Hungary against the proposed taxation of using the internet in Hungary.
According to some organizers at the anti internet tax rally held in Budapest Tuesday evening, Budapest has not seen this many people gathered for protest in 25 years.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktór Órbán and his ruling Fidesz party proposed a tax that would charge operators with 150 HUF (0,60 USD, 0,50 EUR) per gigabyte of traffic. While in opposition, in 2008, the party was against the introduction of such a tax.
At it’s peak 15 000 people tuned in to watch online on the Ustream of Nullker.
The protesters chanted “zero internet tax”, “Orbán leave” and “corrupt Fidesz” Also shouting out “Ildikó, where are you?” referring to Ildikó Vida, the director of the National Tax and Customs Administration of Hungary (NAV). She was found by an RTL Klub TV-crew at Vienna’s Schwechat airport last Wednesday, leaving for what she called: “a vacation” together with the vice-president of the authority, Dezsöné Csillag. According to hvg.hu both of them, together with Marianna Dávida, also a director of NAV, have been issued a travel ban to the United States following allegations of corruption.
The new Hungarian national airline Solyom Airways is set to take delivery of it’s first airplane on August 18th.
A Boeing 737-500 will be the launch airplane of the new national airline, and arrives from the UK to Budapest Liszt Ferenc International Airport on August 18th.
Initial plans are to offer their aircraft as charter capacity until scheduled services commence in September.
Five more 737-500s are on their way and will make up the airline’s fleet. Plans include acquiring Airbus A320s and have a fleet of 50 aircraft by 2017.
The airline is planning to take over Malév’s role and seeks to fill the gap that has been left after Malév’s bankruptcy last year. The business plan includes operating with a hub and spoke model.
Budapest Airport welcomed this season’s first scheduled flight from Helsinki on Saturday. Operated by Finland-based Star Alliance member Blue1, the flight touched down on schedule at Budapest Airport just before 18:00.
Blue1 is returning to Budapest having previously operated the route from 2007-08. The airline is now operating scheduled services from the Finnish capital of Helsinki to Budapest throughout summer 2012. The flights will operate weekly from 02 June through to 29 September, increasing to twice weekly peak season between 04 July and 08 August.
Saturdays 02 June 2012 – 29 September 2012
Depart Helsinki 16:30 Arrive Budapest 17:55
Depart Budapest 18:35 Arrive Helsinki 22:00
Wednesdays 04 July 2012 – 08 August 2012
Depart Helsinki 16:30 Arrive Budapest 17:55
Depart Budapest 18:35 Arrive Helsinki 22:00
Local times are shown
The route is being operated by a Boeing 717 aircraft. Tickets are available to book now at blue1.com.
“We are delighted to welcome Blue1 back to the market,” said Kam Jandu, Budapest Airport’s Aviation Director. “This is a great additional seasonal connection to Finland providing passengers travelling from Budapest with improved transit connections to destinations in Scandinavia and beyond.”
“I am very happy that we are back in Budapest, a city which fits perfectly into our Summer Collection portfolio,” said Janne Hattula VP Commercial Blue1. “Among other route openings within Scandinavia, Blue1 has added two new leisure destinations into Europe this summer, Budapest being one of them.”
Blue1has been a part of the SAS Group since 1998. It is the second largest airline in Finland and is the only Finnish company in the Star Alliance, the world’s largest airline alliance, offering smooth flight connections to more than 1000 destinations worldwide. Blue1’s routes cover all Finnish, Scandinavian and other major European cities carrying approximately 1.6m passengers per annum. In addition to direct flights Blue1 offers excellent connections to SAS Scandinavian destinations in Europe, the USA and the Far East.