Opposition Parties Slam Orbán On Migration

  • 13 Sep 2016 9:00 AM
Opposition Parties Slam Orbán On Migration
The opposition Socialist Party said at a debate in Parliament it was plainly misleading to blame the European Commission for the migration crisis. Responding to the prime minister’s remarks, Socialist group leader Bertalan Tóth said rather than hindering a solution to the crisis the European community is the “sole potential solution”.

Commenting on Orbán’s remarks on Hungary’s progress, Tóth said there are four million people living below the poverty line and more than 100,000 in state fostered jobs schemes.

He said a sign of the government’s failure in education and employment policy was the 100,000 unfilled jobs currently combined with a significant number of emigrants.

Gábor Vona, leader of the radical nationalist Jobbik party, argued in favour of turning up for the October 2 referendum and rejecting the EU’s migrant quotas. What is really at stake in the referendum is its validity, he said. If it is valid, a law or the constitution will have to be amended, just as Jobbik recommended earlier. If it is invalid, Brussels will be given a document showing that Hungarians did not reject in the legal sense the introduction of quotas.

“This is a huge danger that stems from Orbán’s irresponsibility. And in this case the prime minister should resign,” Vona said. The opposition LMP party accused the government of “political shorttermism” in handling the migration issue.

LMP group leader Erzsébet Schmuck argued that was why the government had launched its “hatemongering” referendum campaign. The opposition Együtt party said Orbán did not envision a positive future for the EU. Zsuzsanna Szelényi, who sits as an independent MP, said that Hungary does not follow the rules of democracy but the prime minister publicly criticises his negotiating partners in Brussels with whom he is supposed to find common ground on Europe’s future.

Meanwhile, Orbán opens up to eastern leaders who “don’t play by Europe’s rules” and only understand power, she said.

The Dialogue for Hungary (PM) party said: “Orbán’s remarks have nothing to do with reality.” PM co-leader Tímea Szabó said Orbán should have talked about “hundreds of thousands of children starving, doctors and nurses leaving the country ... “ The Democratic Coalition called Orbán’s allegations over left-wing cities “false fear-mongering”.

László Varju, DK’s deputy leader, said the referendum had nothing to do with the quota system but about Hungary’s EU membership.

Hungary will only remain a member if voters boycott the Oct. 2 vote. In response, Lajos Kósa, the ruling Fidesz party’s parliamentary group leader, said that while many MPs agree with tackling the migration problem at the point of origin, the opposition continuously refuses to support measures such as school or hospital construction projects abroad or increasing the Hungarian army’s role in foreign conflicts.

Kósa said the government is committed to working with organisations that provide aid to the migrants’ countries of origin and thanked the Maltese Charity and the Hungarian charity groups involved in those programmes for their efforts. He rejected the criticisms aimed at Fidesz and the government that say their stance on migration incites hatred.

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

MTI photo: Illyés Tibor

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