DK, Liberals Criticise Hungary’s PM Orbán Over ‘Anti-EU’ Remarks

  • 28 Jun 2016 9:00 AM
DK, Liberals Criticise Hungary’s PM Orbán Over ‘Anti-EU’ Remarks
Prime Minister Viktor Orbán should stop pursuing his “anti-EU” policies and cancel the government’s national referendum on mandatory migrant quotas to be held in the autumn, the opposition Democratic Coalition said. “With the referendum Hungary, too, may end up finding itself outside the EU,” a spokesman for the leftist party said.

Zsolt Gréczy criticised the prime minister for his remarks at a graduation ceremony of officers over the weekend, accusing Orbán of misunderstanding Brexit.

Orbán, who campaigned in the British press for the UK remaining in the bloc, stroke an opposite, anti-EU tone in his weekend speech, Gréczy said, in reference to the prime minister praising the British for “taking their fate back into their own hands”.

“Orbán may have failed to realise that Britons are not celebrating the referendum’s outcome at all, given that uncertainty and an economic crisis are to follow,” he added.

Gréczy criticised Orbán for being cynical in saying that in the future, countries which maintain order, provide security and uphold legality will have an advantage.

Orbán made his remarks as prime minister of a country where the chief prosecution is led by a “Fidesz crony”, where issuing fictitious state bonds worth hundreds of billions of forints goes unpunished and where corruption surrounds the sale of local council flats, said Gréczy.

The opposition Liberal Party has also criticised Orbán for his “very controversial” statements regarding the European Union. Gábor Fodor, the party’s leader, said that he had circulated a letter among lawmakers, asking them to confirm their commitment to the EU in light of the UK’s Leave vote.

He added that Orbán should give a clear answer to where he stands on Hungary leaving the union, as his recent statements have been ambiguous.

The prime minister is obviously using double talk, as the rhetoric of his weekend speech suggested his sympathies lied with the British vote and he thinks that Brexit is an example to be followed, Fodor said.

The Liberals urge Hungarians to take part in the quota referendum in the autumn and to “vote against Orbán”.

The co-ruling Fidesz and Christian Democrats said DK, the party of former prime minister Ferenc Gyurcsány, will do “anything to thwart the referendum on migrant quotas”.

A democrat would never do anything to protest a referendum, István Hollik, a spokesman for the ruling parties, said.

Yet, Gyurcsány is resorting to all possible means to stop the referendum, because he is pro-immigration, like Brussels, Hollik added.

This kind of an approach is what has steered Europe into trouble and to what Britain now responded with Brexit.

“Britain wants nothing to do with a Europe where people’s opinions are not heard,” he added. On the other hand, Hungarians want to reform the bloc from within and would be crazy to want to leave it, he said.

Republished with permission of Hungary Matters, MTI’s daily newsletter.

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