Hungarian FM Calls On UN High Commissioner To Resign

  • 27 Feb 2018 7:47 AM
  • Hungary Matters
Hungarian FM Calls On UN High Commissioner To Resign
Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó has called on the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) Zeid bin Ra’ad Zeid al-Hussein to resign after the high commissioner accused Prime Minister Viktor Orbán of xenophobia and racism during a speech at the 37th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva on Monday.

“This is unacceptable from an official of an international organisation; an unworthy and appalling accusation. The high commissioner should resign,” Szijjártó said in his address.

In the session, the high commissioner said: “Today oppression is fashionable again; the security state is back, and fundamental freedoms are in retreat in every region of the world. Shame is also in retreat. Xenophobes and racists in Europe are casting off any sense of embarrassment – like Hungary’s Viktor Orbán who earlier this month said ‘we do not want our colour… to be mixed in with others'.

Do they not know what happens to minorities in societies where leaders seek ethnic, national or racial purity?”

Szijjártó told MTI by phone that this was not the first time the high commissioner had made “accusations against Hungary” or had tried to make “Hungary appear as if it had the characteristics of the darkest of dictatorships.”

He said he had told the session that Hungary’s position was unambiguous: migration is not a basic human right. “We will protect our borders and we will make every effort to ensure our position is crystal clear in the UN debate on migration,” the foreign minister said.

In early February, the UN published a draft agreement on migration which includes making illegal border crossing a non-criminal act.

As we wrote today, the operating environment for civil organisations in Hungary has been made more complicated in recent years on the basis of a well-established scheme, a representative for the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) said on public television.

  • How does this content make you feel?

XpatLoop Media Partner

Hungary Matters

Launched in January 2014, this twice-daily newsletter covers 'everything you need to know about what’s going on in Hungary and beyond', according to its publisher the state media agency MTI. Click the title above for more info, and to subscribe.

Explore More Reports