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Activities of Western Europe NGOs (9-8-2014 – 22-8-2014)

Lithuania

European Foundation of Human Rights (EFHR), founded in Lithuania, published a report entitled ‘Observance of human rights in Lithuania for years 2012-2013 (The rights of national minorities in Lithuania)’. According to EFHR the domain of human rights shows regress since 2004. The major reproaches concerned the lack of Law on National Minorities, not having ratified European  Charter for Regional or Minority Languages, or anti-discrimination regulations. There still remains a lot to improve in the domain of Lithuanians’ awareness of human rights. Many of them also do not know about the ways of executing their rights. More information here.

EFHR published on its website an article on the topic of hate speech in the Internet. The author reminded that discrimination or instigating violence are penal acts and shows examples of hateful comments in the Web. Previous actions of EFHR contributed to penalization of more than 40 authors of discriminating comments. All of them claimed that they were not aware of prohibition of expressing hateful opinions.

Slovakia

Slovakian NGO Center for European and North Atlantic Affairs (CEENA) alerted to a growing popularity of radical right in Slovakia. CEENA published a text concerning  radical right, in which the authors examined the ideology of extreme right and tried to find the reasons of xenophobic attitudes. It appears that the support of the radical right depends on presence of immigrants, level of unemployment and education.

Another article on radical right, published by CEENA, focuses on a success of Marian Kotleba in regional elections in November 2013. Alena Kluknavská tried to identify reasons of his extraordinarily large support – Marian Kotleba won the local elections in the Banská Bystrica region – and profoundly analyzed media coverage concerning him before, during and after the elections.

Romania

From August 8th  to 10th Romanian Academic Society (SAR) along with Centre for Independent Journalism organized a training for good governance monitors. Participants had an opportunity to learn about the methodology and techniques of monitoring and received information on anti-corruption legislation in Romania and the transparency of public information. During the workshops also the lectures on monitoring EU funds and public procurement made by local authorities, detection and reporting cases of corruption, monitoring of local municipalities, and fighting discriminatory public policies and hate speech took place. The SAR expert presented an application facilitating filing FOIA request. More information here.

Hungary

Hungarian NGO Átlátszó Center for Investigative Journalism alerts to an inevitable loss of part of the money from EU funds. The reason is that many projects will not be completed by the deadlines. It means that Hungarian government will have to bear the costs. Details here.

A lawsuit concerning freedom of information initiated by Tamás Bodoky has come to an end with a ruling of the Constitutional Court which stated that companies owned by state cannot withhold any information important for public interest. Up to now companies claimed that only institutions mentioned by name in law are obliged to disclose demanded documents. Link to information

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