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CEU makes last-ditch appeal to stay in Budapest

The Central European University’s rector has written to the European Commission in a final plea for help to avoid moving the CEU out of Hungary because of political hounding.

Michael Ignatieff sent a letter to the Commission’s first vice-president Frans Timmermans on 2 November, saying that the CEU’s situation “has reached an absolutely critical stage”. The university will move its main operations from Budapest to Vienna unless a solution to its troubles is reached by 1 December, he warned. 

The Hungarian government introduced legislation requiring the CEU to set up a campus in the United States, where it is legally based, in order to keep its main base of operations in Budapest. The government has indicated it has no intention of recognising that the university has done what was required of it, Ignatieff said in the letter, which was published online by the news website Politico EU.

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