Hungary's prime minister threatens to fire tax chief unless she sues US diplomat for libel

Government And Institutions Associated Press

Hungary's prime minister says he will fire the head of the national tax authority unless she "immediately" files a libel lawsuit against the American diplomat who implicated her in corruption.

Continue Reading Below

Prime Minister Viktor Orban said if the unspecified allegations against Ildiko Vida were proven in court, she would go to prison.

Orban said U.S. Embassy charge d'affairs M. Andre Goodfriend "should be a man and accept responsibility for his allegations" and not hide behind diplomatic immunity. Goodfriend has said the U.S. knows about fraud within Hungary's tax office.

Vida is one of six Hungarian officials banned from entering the United States because of alleged corruption. She denies wrongdoing.

Since the issue surfaced in October, the government has not announced its own independent investigation, instead demanding proof from the United States.