Washington, DC—Today, Representative Gregory W. Meeks, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, issued the following statement in response to the efforts by the governments of Poland and Hungary to further curtail press freedom and political opposition in their countries:

“I'm deeply concerned by the Polish and Hungarian governments’ efforts to curtail press freedoms in their countries in an effort to squeeze out independent and unbiased journalism and silence outlets that are critical of their governments’ actions.

“In Poland, the 15 percent tax on advertising is a transparent attack on independent media organizations that already struggle to compete against Poland’s heavily subsidized state-owned outlets. Likewise, Hungary’s decision to take Klubradio, one of Hungary’s only remaining independent radio broadcasters, off the air is one more nail in the coffin of Hungary’s once vibrant free press.

“I call on the governments of Hungary and Poland to abandon these attempts to silence independent media and urge them to live up to the values expected of constructive members of the transatlantic community of democracies.”