Athena Institute


Domestic extremist or hate groups are organized, formal or informal groups that in the name of an ideology carry out verbal, symbolic or physical aggression or call for such acts against certain people or a definable community of people based mostly on - real or perceived -characteristics such as national or ethnic origin, race, religion or sexual orientation.

Hate groups are not defined under the Penal Code and in themselves are not punishable by law until they carry out criminal acts. Developing a definition - based on international judicial and police force practice and recommendations of key international organizations - was made necessary as such organizations was formed and learned fast how to take advantage of the broad rights and freedoms modern democracies guarantee throughout Europe. At the same time however, criminalization of the category would not be to the purpose: earlier eras - if nothing else, decades of Communism - have taught us that, however inhumane they are, thoughts just cannot be banned.

On the other hand, this does not mean that we have to watch idly the formation of domestic extremist groups or their acts. The Athena Institute is monitoring these organizations and extremist activities in Hungary and makes the most important information available for key stakeholders and the public on the Hate Groups Map. The profound goal of the program is to provide relevant and timely information in order to further discussion and policy development to counter this phenomenon that threatens both the democratic political process and human lives.

The Hate Groups Map is a database that is kept up-to-date on a daily basis and contains only verified information. It also serves as the basis for the Institute’s analytical programs.