Up to 10,000 people, many dressed as clowns, have marched from Budapest’s parliament to the presidential palace, reports the BBC.The clowns were protesting austerity measures, and dressed as clowns as a response to Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s quip that he would send his “Secretary of Clown Affairs” to negotiate with them.
Orban is currently trying to lower Hungary’s state debt, which runs at 80 per cent of GDP, with a harsh austerity package.
The largest protests in Budapest were held by members of Hungary’s law enforcement and defence forces.
Retirement rights for firefighters, policemen and other high risk workers, are being cut, according to the AP, removing rights for retirement at 57 or after 20 years of service.
The protestors cast symbolic ballots that asked if they were withdrawing government support after Orban’s policies. The only two options were “Yes” and “Certainly”.
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