Foundation quits Hungary over 'repressive' policies — George Soros

Hungarian army officers stand at the Serbian Hungarian border as a Syrian refugee women crosses near Roszke southern Hungary Saturday Sept. 12 2015

Soros is a United States billionaire and philanthropist who was born to a Jewish family in Hungary in 1930.

University rector Michael Ignatieff called on the government of Prime Minister Viktor Orban to formally recognise that the institution had complied with a set of new regulations and should be allowed to keep operating in Hungary.

The foundation of philanthropist George Soros has said it is closing its office in Hungary, blaming the move on an "increasingly repressive" environment. "It has become impossible to protect the security of our operations and our staff in Hungary from arbitrary government interference".

Patrick Gaspard, president of the Open Society Foundations, said on Tuesday that Budapest had "denigrated and misrepresented" the organization's work and repressed civil society "for the sake of political gain".

The "Stop Soros" package was "one of the most important questions of the election, Hungarians voted for it... what we said we would do, we will do", Orban said Monday on a visit to Warsaw.

Soros launched his first foundation in Hungary in 1984, using it to promote freedom of expression during the last years of Communism, the OSF said.

Mr Soros denies Mr Orban's accusation that his foundation is part of a plan to bring unsustainable numbers of migrants to Europe.

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The campaign was criticized in the Hungarian Jewish community as having anti-Semitic overtones.

George Soros' Open Society Foundations operates more than 40 offices around the world.

Among a host of restrictive measures, it would force NGOs that help migrants to undergo security screening and pay a 25 per cent tax on all foreign funding.

The representative of the Hungarian government, zoltán kovács, declined to comment.

OSF said it would still support the work of civil society groups in Hungary after it had left.

"CEU can not go into another academic year in a situation of legal uncertainty", its rector Michael Ignatieff said on Tuesday.

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