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Hungarian President Katalin Novak resigns over child abuse pardon scandal


February 12, 2024

Hungary’s President Katalin Novak has resigned.

A member of the ruling conservative party Fidesz, Novak’s decision came after more than a week of public outrage after it was revealed that she issued a presidential pardon in April 2023 to a man convicted of hiding a string of child sexual abuses in a state-run children’s home.

Novak – the first female president in Hungary’s history – has unleashed a political scandal unprecedented for the country’s long-serving nationalist government.

Her resignation is a rare episode of turmoil for the right-wing party, which under the leadership of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has been accused of dismantling democratic institutions and rigging the media in its favour.