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Migration debates – the chasm widens

September 11th, 2015

A centrist political scientist fears that the highly ideological and increasingly harsh dispute over migration will further divide the Hungarian public and make any reasonable and moderate debate impossible.

This country risks being totally polarized by the debate over migration, Gábor Török comments on the increasingly sectarian ideological dispute raging in Hungary. The centrist political analyst admits that both out-of-control migration and Hungary’s poor international reputation are serious problems. These are dwarfed, however, by the implications of entrenched ideological cleavages in society, Török fears. He suspects that in addition to political parties, the population has also become totally divided this time. As both sides become more radical and hateful in their rhetoric, the political centre is hollowing out and mediation between the two ideological sides will become impossible, he writes. Even if the migration crisis is over one day, he predicts, the current dispute has eroded the last vestiges in Hungarian society of any capacity for compromise with one another.