Liberals and Democrats fire a shot across President Orbán’s bows The ALDE Group in the European Parliament has today welcomed the adoption, by a clear majority of MEPs, of a parliamentary resolution reiterating the clear risk of a serious breach of EU values under the Government of Prime Minister Orbán.
The European Parliament will now draw up a special report and schedule a vote to trigger Article 7.1 of the European Treaty, which foresees a graduated procedure of dialogue and investigation, recommendation and, if needed, ultimately sanctions.
Sophie In’t Veld MEP, First Vice-President of the ALDE Group:
"Checks and balances are essential for a healthy democracy. But during his seven years in office, Mr Orbán has systematically undermined all critical voices and opposition forces. He is guilty of interfering with academic freedom, controlling the school curriculum, gagging the media, harassing NGOs, undermining the independence of the judiciary and limiting freedom of religion. Under his watch, asylum seekers are maltreated and detained in shameful conditions, while government campaigns have fanned racism and hatred. There are recurring allegations of corruption and nepotism.
"The European Parliament has expressed its concerns repeatedly and the buck stops here. Enough is enough. He has provoked Europe to the point where he has even lost the support of his own political family".
"It is certainly a painful step, and we had truly hoped we could avoid this. But for seven years Mr Orbán has shown nothing but growing contempt of the Union that his country is a member of. All attempts to settle matters with dialogue have failed. We need to make it very clear to all EU members and the outside world, that the EU will not tolerate the systematic undermining of the democratic rule of law.“
“We now urge the European Commission and EU Member States to finally put this matter on the agenda, and to stop turning a blind eye. "