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BBC to host Budapest debate on referendum, migration

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wikimedia commons - flickr - szilveszter farkas

The BBC World Service is holding a debate at Corvinus University of Budapest on October 5 as part of a series of debates across Europe, as the continent grapples with the big issues of migration, the economy and security, according to a press release issued yesterday. Topics will include Hungaryʼs October 2 referendum and EU quotas for refugee relocation.

Corvinus University of Budapest. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Flickr/Szilveszter Farkas)

In a Budapest edition of the BBC World Questions series, broadcaster Jonathan Dimbleby invites members of the public to put questions to a panel of politicians and thinkers to debate the issues affecting Hungary - related to the October 2 referendum on refugee quotas and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s opposition to EU plans on refugees - as well as the general situation of post-Brexit Europe today.  

The panel includes Zoltán Kovács, government spokesman at the Hungarian Prime Ministerʼs Office; Zsuzsanna Szelényi, MP of the opposition Together (Együtt) party; János Csák, business leader and former Hungarian ambassador to the United Kingdom; and Professor Loukas Tsoukalis, a Greek expert on the European Union, the BBC announced.

“Sixty years after the Hungarian Uprising against Soviet control, ʼBBC World Questions: Europe and Hungaryʼ will ask what Hungary’s future is within the Union and how the country should respond to an EU in crisis,” the press statement notes.

“The BBC World Service is the home of international debate, and this time we are bringing World Questions to Budapest in the wake of an important vote on EU migrant plans,” said Mary Hockaday, Controller of BBC World Service English.  “We are delighted to be hosting this debate at Corvinus University, which was at the heart of the Hungarian uprising 60 years ago, providing a fitting location for a free and open debate. We look forward to hearing the views of Hungarian audiences and our distinguished panel in Budapest and sharing them with the rest of Europe and the world.”

“Itʼs an honor to welcome BBCʼs World Questions program at our university,” commented András Lánczi, Rector of Corvinus University. “Corvinus University has always been an important space for discussing the public affairs of Hungary and the world. The issues on the agenda are indeed of historical significance, so we are looking forward to hosting a vivid conversation regarding the complex questions of economy, migration and security in Europe.”

BBC World Questions is an English-language event, and the debate will be led entirely by questions from the audience, and recorded for international radio broadcast by the BBC World Service. The BBC World Service web page notes that anyone wishing to join the debate as part of the audience should apply for free tickets here.

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