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Stépán, Balázs

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2 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

hvg - Hungary | 07/04/2011

Stop Hungary's far-right militias

In certain underdeveloped areas of eastern Hungary the extreme right-wing party Jobbik and its paramilitary militias stand in direct rivalry with the police. The publicist Balázs Stépán warns that things could get out of hand in the left-liberal weekly paper Heti Világgazdaság: "The words that everyone could see coming were officially uttered by the extreme right Jobbik party during an anti-Roma march in the north-eastern town of Hejőszalonta. ... The high-ranking Jobbik politician Árpád Miklós repeatedly stated that the government must come to its senses and strengthen the police. Failing that, 'we will organise ourselves and strip them of their power by force'. ... According to Jobbik, public order has completely broken down in eastern Hungary, the governing Fidesz party has been caught in the nets of civil rights activists and supports the Roma. As a result it can no longer maintain order and protect the Hungarian population, Jobbik claims. ... In the meantime the party speaks not only of 'Gypsy crime' but also of 'Gypsy terror'."

Magyar Hírlap - Hungary | 30/01/2007

Hungary plans to give public full access to Stasi files

Political parties in Hungary yesterday began talks about a new law which would guarantee the public unrestricted access to Stasi files, while at the same time protecting the rights of victims of the organisation's spying activities. According to Balázs Stépán, the current law is "pathological" and "full of compromises" and therefore in urgent need of reform: "When it became known that former Prime Minister Medgyessy had worked for the secret service under the codename 'Comrade D-209', he promised full access to all Stasi files, but was forced to resign soon afterwards. His successor, Ferenc Gyurcsány, went back on this because anonymous letters – presumably from former functionaries of the secret service – put the socialist party under pressure. The letters stirred up fear, with the result that a completely harmless version of the law entered force... Access to the files was heavily restricted. The director of the national security service declared many files secret, and the Supreme Court approved the measure. Once again, the public was excluded."

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