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Hungary: Internet tax draws thousands out in protest

Hungary: Internet tax draws thousands out in protest
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The biggest anti-government protest since Prime Minister Viktor Orban first took office four years ago has been held in the Hungarian capital Budapest.

What brought thousands onto the streets was a planned tax on internet usage and discontent with what critics say is Orban’s undermining of democracy.

Zsolt Várady an online innovator addressed the crowds: “The planned tax on internet use compromises the wider spreading of the internet and also freedom of information.”

Orban’s centre-right government has also been accused of creeping authoritarianism despite being re-elected by a landslide this year.

“Definitely the government makes decisions, that make people angry…..I find their entire policy programme outrageous,” said one protester.

Another added: “Perhaps it is naive to think so, but I do think that finally this will have an effect, and if need be I will come many times, and we will not stop demonstrating.”

The internet levy has drawn criticism from users and service providers alike despite a proposed cap on monthly expenditure

Reporting for euronews from Budapest, Andrea Hajagos said:

“Yet the organisers have not called for another demonstration in the next few days, but they have claimed that if parliament votes yes to this internet tax bill despite the demonstrations, they will them go out onto the streets again.”