Orban: "The european right faces its ambiguities", according to Marine Le Pen
Orban: "The european right faces its ambiguities", according to Marine Le Pen
EU Parliament to Debate Possible Sanctions Against Hungary
14 September, 2018, 18:29
Even EPP leader Mandred Weber, who earlier was supportive of Orban and is seeking to become the European Commission president next year, said he had voted for triggering Article 7.
"All my solidarity. No to sanctions and to trials of freely elected governments", read the post by Salvini, who is also Italy's Deputy Prime Minister.
The motion passed with the required two-thirds majority of 448 MEPs backing the declaration that Hungary is at "clear risk of serious breach" of European Union core values, including judicial independence, academic freedom and freedom of expression.
The EU lawmakers voted 448-197 in favour of a report recommending the launch of a so-called Article 7 procedure, which could lead to the suspension of Hungary's EU voting rights.
ND sources said this position is a response to repeated criticism by ruling SYRIZA over the party's alleged ideological identification with the government of Viktor Orban.
These were dubbed the "Stop Soros" laws after liberal Hungarian-born U.S. billionaire George Soros, who is accused without evidence by Orban's government of orchestrating migration to Europe.
The voting, however, does not mean immediate sanctions against Hungary, as the parliament passes the motion to the European Council, which has to unanimously decide on the punitive measures.
If approved, the motion would theoretically open the way for sanctions such as a suspension of Hungary's voting rights in the European Union - but in practice that is sure to be blocked by Orban's ally, the nationalist government in Poland.
Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban, centre, arrives to deliver his speech at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France.
"The European Parliament rightly stood up for the Hungarian people and for the EU".
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Both Hungary and Poland, as well as the Czech Republic, have been at odds with European bureaucrats and pro-immigration politicians from other EU member states over the past few years.
Szijjarto said Hungary was considering legal options to appeal the result because of the way the vote was tallied.
Dutch anti-Islam campaigner and MP Geert Wilders described the vote on Twitter as "a bloody shame".
"To say that criticizing laws, criticizing the government would amount to criticizing a nation or a people, frankly speaking Mr. Orban, that's the coward's way out", Timmermans said near the end of the debate.
Aside from its anti-immigrant stance, Orban's government is also accused of silencing independent media and academia, removing independent judges, cracking down on organisations helping homeless people, migrants or disadvantaged groups, such as Roma, and condoning government corruption.
Also on Tuesday night Orban also faced the prospect of his party being kicked out of the right-wing party group in the European parliament.
Hungary adopted legislation in July that further restricts asylum claims and criminalizes "supporting and facilitating illegal immigration".
The EPP membership has muted European Union reaction to Orban's policies over the years and the big question mark is how the group's 217 members will act when the vote is held on Wednesday.
"Our perspective is something that would help the EPP remain the strongest political community or group in the European Parliament", Kovacs said.
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