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EP resolution dismissed by PM Orbán

May 23rd, 2017

An independent conservative commentator detects a series of inconsistencies in the resolution adopted by the European Parliament on Hungary last week, and believes that it only further fuels domestic government propaganda.

In his customary by-weekly radio interview on Friday, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said he couldn’t decide whether to laugh or cry when he read the EP resolution on Hungary. He referred in particular to the case of a Syrian who was condemned for inciting a crowd to storm the closed border crossing and for throwing stones at the Hungarian police. (See BudaPost, December 3, 2016) The authors of the resolution brought up the case as an infringement of basic human rights and described the man as trying to diffuse the tension with a loudspeaker in his hand and throwing three objects towards the border guard.

On Válasz, András Stumpf agrees with the Prime Minister in finding the resolution full of inconsistencies. He rejects the allegations of anti-Semitism contained in the resolution and quotes an interview with the Israeli ambassador to Budapest who told Heti Válasz that the Orbán government is not anti-Semitic. As to the three demands contained in the resolution, he agrees with two of them, although he remarks that none of them are the EU’s business. He shares the view that the government should revoke the amendments to the Higher Education Act which threaten to drive Central European University out of Budapest, and the new law requiring foreign funded NGOs to register as such. However, neither of these two issues lie within the competence of the EU, he claims. As to the third demand urging Hungary to withdraw the law on closed refugee reception centres, Stumpf shares the government claim that they are not closed, as asylum seekers can leave them toward Serbia. What they cannot do is to cross into Hungary and proceed towards Western Europe. All in all, he thinks the government will not find it hard to convince the population that the European Parliament is wrong in its attitude towards Hungary.


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