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Central subsidies for civil organisations will increase from 7.7 billion forints in 2020 to 9.2 billion forints (EUR 27.2m) next year, a deputy state secretary of the Prime Minister’s Office told a press conference. Vince Szalay-Bobrovniczky spoke before a prayer breakfast organised by pro-government organisation CÖF and associated CÖKA foundation, saying that civil groups in towns with fewer than 5,000 residents would benefit from a further 5 billion forints. According to the official, Hungary’s 61,000 civil groups benefitted from a total 370 billion forints last year, including central, municipal and EU subsidies, as well as private donations. Szalay-Bobrovniczky added that the PM’s Office could decide on 15% of the central subsidies, and those decisions reflect “the government’s priorities of protecting Christian culture and the family”.
Tristan Azbej, state secretary in charge of aid to persecuted Christian communities, said that “80% of mankind lives in countries restricting the freedom of religion” and insisted that 80% of those persecuted on a religious basis were Christians. “They blow up churches in the East, close them down in the West while churches are being built in Hungary,” the state secretary said.
CÖF-CÖKA chief László Csizmadia called for cooperation between state, civil society and the churches “to preserve a Christian Europe and a European identity”. He said Europe was under attack by illegal migrants, and insisted that their influx was promoted by a “social-liberal approach” by European institutions as well as by “NGOs cooperating with human smugglers”. CÖF-CÖKA aims to “keep religious wars out of Europe and prevent the emergence of parallel societies”, he added.