(CNN)Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Wednesday showed no signs of heeding US and European Union warnings to rein in his "illiberal state," instead introducing new laws that critics say will tighten his grip on power.
Hungary's 'slave law' passes, sparking protests in parliament and on the streets
Hundreds of protesters marched through Budapest and gathered at the parliament building late into Wednesday night, after Orban's hardline Fidesz party pushed through legislation allowing employers to ask their workers to take on up to 400 hours' overtime per year.
Critics have dubbed it the "slave law." The government told CNN that the "voluntary changes to working hours" were "in the interest of the workers" and would allow people to work and earn more.
Orban's right-wing party, which holds a parliamentary majority, also pushed through another controversial law Wednesday that will create new courts, overseen by the justice minister, to handle cases concerning "government business," such as tax and elections, Reuters reported.
The government told CNN that the new courts, which are set to begin operating next year, will be independent and "in line with current European approaches and standards."
But with Orban's justice minister expected to oversee the hiring of judges, rights groups warned the move will set the country further down the path to authoritarianism.