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Top court annuls legal provisions on public use of Lake Balaton area

Hungary's Constitutional Court has annulled certain legal provisions that enabled the restriction of the public use of the area around Lake Balaton.

The court reviewed the constitutionality of the provisions in question at the request of a lawmaker.

In a statement on Friday, the court cited the complaint as saying that the law on the protection of the Lake Balaton area allowed construction around the lake to be regulated by government and ministerial decrees. According to the complaint, the provisions in question failed to guarantee the protection of the Lake Balaton area as required by the Fundamental Law and granted exemptions to restrictions on construction around the lake.

The court ruled that any exemptions to legal rules ensuring the fulfillment of obligations concerning the protection of state institutions needed to be regulated by law. However, the current regulation grants exemptions to rules established by law and allows for regulation by decree by weakening the guarantees of the fundamental right to a healthy environment, the court said.

The court said it has therefore annulled the provisions in question of the 2018 law on the spatial planning of certain priority regions in Hungary, citing unconstitutionality.

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