Next week, judges will decide if the Hungarian authorities were right to prosecute a man who displayed a “Fascist” flag close to an anti-racism demonstration
The 43 year old applicant, Károly Fáber (Fáber v. Hungary – no. 40721/08) lives in Budapest and was fined in May 2007 for displaying the striped Árpád flag, less than 100 metres away from a demonstration against racism and hatred.
It was organised by a socialist political group in an area where many Jews were exterminated between 1944 and 1945 whilst the Arrow Cross, the equivalent of the National Socialist Party, was in control of the country.
It is claimed that the Árpád stripes have Fascist connotations and that the Arrow Cross Party used a similar symbol for its flag in the 1940s.
Relying on Article 10 (freedom of expression), Article 11 (freedom of assembly and association), Article 6 §§ 1 and 3 (right to a fair trial) and Article 14 (prohibition of discrimination), Fáber complains about being prosecuted for trying to express his political opinion during a peaceful public gathering.
The European Court of Human Rights is scheduled to publish its decision on the complaint on 24 July.