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Infringement proceedings against Hungary

January 19th, 2012

As the European Commission announced infringement proceedings against Hungary, left wing newspapers blame the government, while one right wing commentator lays most of the blame on the EU for its refusal to accept unorthodox methods to tackle the crisis. Another pro-government analyst urges talks to overcome the crisis.

On Tuesday, the European Commission began infringement proceedings against Hungary for infringements of the independence of its central bank and data protection authority, as well as due to measures affecting the judiciary. PM Viktor Orbán confirmed Hungary’s commitment to reach a rapid agreement. The Prime Minister said the Hungarian government is flexible and open to consultations on the issues contested by the EC.

Népszabadság believes that major European countries should join forces to compel Orbán to comply. Columnist Balázs Pócs says the European Commission speaks legal language, but the only language Orbán understands is the language of power. “It’s a pity that the ‘big powers’ remain silent, at a time when Orbán would actually listen to what they say.” Europe has no choice but to wait for Hungarians to vote Fidesz out of office, unless the present government decides to accept the EU’s “diktat”, in order to avoid bankruptcy, Pócs concludes.

Hungary should never have reached this point – states another left wing daily, Népszava, and blames “PM Viktor Orbán and Co.” for building a social and economic system totally different from what we promised when we joined the European Union.

The author, Zsolt Zsebesi blames PM Viktor Orbán for failing to establish  partnerships not only with Brussels, but with Berlin, Paris and even Rome or Warsaw. “The new Hungarian system is far from what supporters and political opponents expected from Fidesz,” concludes the left wing daily.

In a combative editorial in pro-government Magyar Hírlap, deputy editor László Szentesi Zöldi criticizes the Western political system, for not being able to live with (Hungary’s) unorthodox methods. The Hungarian government openly turned against the globalist powers in what the paper calls the “most uplifting moments since 1990”, and he adds that this is precisely why “those forces are trying so harshly to overrun the country.” Szentesi Zöldi calls the IMF, the EU “and all those trying to overrun us, the most obscure figures in World history”. Nations survive international organizations and there will be Hungarians in the Carpathians long after the IMF and the European Union are consigned to the dustbin of history – Magyar Hírlap concludes.

Another pro-government daily, Magyar Nemzet strikes a more down-to-earth note, stating that by joining the EU Hungary accepted the community’s principles, and Brussels has every right to demand that these rules be respected.

“This is not the end of the world. The picture will be clearer, as the political debate between Hungary and the European Union turns into a legal one” – writes Gábor Stier. (This is the official government policy too – BudaPost)

Magyar Nemzet admits that some bills might have needed more time and better preparation, but the government should also have done more to make its European partners understand the reasons behind these laws.

“The European Union doesn’t trust Hungary’s ability to overcome the financial crisis and questions its democratic commitment too. One can feel aggrieved, but it’s better to talk it over,” recommends Gábor Stier in Magyar Nemzet.

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