Commission takes Hungary to court over LGBTQ+ rights, media freedom

The European Commission has taken Hungary to the EU’s top court for allegedly violating laws on media freedom and LGBTQ+ rights.

The Commission Friday announced it was sending Hungary to the Court of Justice of the European Union for refusing to renew a radio license for independent Hungarian media Klubradio. Hungary will also have to face European judges over an anti-LGBTQ+ law. The law seeks to prevent children and teenagers from accessing content and ads about LGBTQ+ issues.

Budapest’s actions go against several European telecom, audiovisual, digital laws, including the Audiovisual Media Services Directive and the e-Commerce Directive, the Commission argues. The anti-LGBTQ+ rules also infringe on crucial foundational European texts — the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU and Treaty of the EU — and the EU Charter of fundamental rights.

Brussels’ move comes after it said Hungary’s explanations failed to assuage the Commission’s concerns. The Commission had launched infringement procedures in June 2021.