Soros's Open Society 'To Close Budapest Office, Leave Hungary'

Elias Hubbard
April 20, 2018

OSF chairman Patrick Gaspard personally travelled to Hungary's capital to inform around 100 members of staff there that the worldwide grantmaking network founded by Soros will be moving its Eastern European operations to Berlin, Austria's Die Presse reported Thursday.

Hungarian news web site 444.hu said the Open Society Foundations office will close by August 31, moving first to Vienna and then on to Berlin.

The OSF's announcement followed reports that Soros' Central European University (CEU) is also planning to retreat from Hungary, with the institution having already signed an agreement with a landlord in Vienna where it will establish a campus. It has said it remains committed to its Budapest campus, despite government pressure that it said was geared to oust it from Hungary.

"It's hard to recruit new staff when we cannot even tell where their workplace will be", Fodor added.

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has blamed Soros, a Hungarian-born USA financier, for a host of ills and pushed through legislation cracking down on non-governmental organisations called the "Stop Soros" laws which drew worldwide criticism.

The planned move comes just after Mr. Orbán and his Fidesz party won a massive two-thirds majority in the Hungarian parliament allowing them to put forward constitutional changes.

Reuters news agency said it has not been able to reach the Open Society Foundations in Budapest or NY for comment.

Prime Minister Orbán has denounced Soros's influence on the migration policies of the European Union claiming that the "Soros Plan" would see millions of migrants enter Europe.

Relations between the U.S. billionaire of Hungarian origin George Soros and Budapest have been strained, with government officials pushing through a bill, the "Stop Soros Act" in order to limit the billionaire's influence on the country's internal affairs.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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