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Luxembourg Foreign Minister would expel Hungary from the EU

September 15th, 2016

A left-wing daily and a conservative commentator both consider the termination of Hungary’s EU membership as proposed by Mr Asselborn as an exaggerated reaction to the bitter divergences which have emerged over the migration crisis.

Jean Asselborn, the Foreign Minister of Luxembourg told the German daily Die Welt that Hungary “is close to shooting refugees” and its membership of the European Union should either be suspended or terminated because of its “massive violation of European values”. Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szíjjártó flatly dismissed Mr Asselborn as someonewho excluded himself from consideration as a serious statesman long time ago.

In its front page editorial Népszabadság calls Mr Asselborn’s statement ‘a gift’ to the Hungarian government in its referendum campaign against potential migrant quotas. If the Foreign Minister of Luxembourg, the left-wing daily fumes, had wanted to improve the plight of refugees in Hungary or protect the freedom of the press and the independence of the judiciary, he would not have resorted to such unrealistic language. Népszabadság adds that Luxembourg should first defend European values by ceasing to be a tax haven rather than by condemning violations by the Hungarian government. The daily welcomes a reaction by Mr Asselborn’s friend, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier who said disagreements should be discussed and no country should be shown the door.

In a sarcastic piece on Válasz, the Heti Válasz website, Bálint Ablonczy remarks that apart from being a paradise for offshore companies, Luxembourg is apparently also the heaven of absurd humour. Mr Asselborn is a veteran critic of the Orbán government, he continues. He spoke earlier of ‘a fascist danger’ during the debates between the European Union and Hungary on its legislation about the media and the courts, where the Hungarian side had to retreat in several fields. But this time the Luxembourg foreign Minister is practically saying that ‘if you don’t do exactly what I say, then get out of the European Union’. Ablonczy calls that theorem ‘the Asselborn conjecture’ and congratulates him on that democratic principle.


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