EU Parliament condemns Hungary’s anti-gay law | Victor Urban
The European Parliament has decried a Hungarian law that bans gays from appearing in educational materials or on prime-time television, calling it a “clear violation” of equality principles.
In a resolution voted in Strasbourg by an overwhelming majority on Thursday, MEPs condemned “in the strongest possible terms” the Hungarian law as a “clear violation of the values, principles and law of the European Union”, while urging the European Commission to launch a fast-track legal case against the Viktor Orban government. .
Activists fear Law It could lead to an increase in physical and verbal assaults against homosexuals in Hungary.
European Union leaders approach in Urban In what was described as an emotional debate during last month’s EU summit, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said the law was a “disgrace”.
“This law puts homosexuality and gender redefinition on a par with pornography,” von der Leyen told MEPs on Wednesday. This law uses child protection, to which we all abide, as an excuse to severely discriminate against people because of their sexual orientation. This law is shameful.
She promised to use the EU’s executive powers to protect citizens’ rights and sent an official letter to the Orban government.
Although the decision is non-binding, it does add pressure on Von der Leyen to make it Hungary to the European Court of Justice. MEPs believe that Hungarian law violates the rights of non-discrimination and freedom of expression, as well as the EU Audiovisual Media Services Directive, and European rules for television and live broadcasting services.
In all, 459 MEPs voted in favor of the resolution, 147 against and 58 abstentions.
MEPs also say Hungarian authorities cannot be trusted to manage EU funds in a “non-discriminatory manner”, amid growing calls for Brussels to stop transfers of funds to Budapest.
The Commission is expected to delay approval of Hungary’s €7.2 billion coronavirus recovery plan, subject to further demands to tackle corruption. A looming July 12 deadline has prompted calls for Brussels to order Hungary to rewrite its plan to address well-documented concerns about politicized courts and weak anti-graft controls. But the commission is likely to fail to meet these demands.
“The current schedule is somewhere between 16 [and] July 19, said Daniel Freund, member of the Budget Control Committee, a member of the Budget Control Committee. They will agree to the Hungarian plan. If all goes well, they manage to write a few additional anti-corruption fixes into the plan somewhere, but nothing that immediately addresses anything.”
He continued, “My reading is that the committees are in trouble.” He said the recovery fund “was not the ideal mechanism for getting countries into structural reform and rebuilding their rule of law and justice system,” adding that time-consuming reforms run counter to the urgent need for economic rescue after the pandemic. “Those are two contradictory things.”
An EU diplomat agreed with this analysis. The diplomat said the committee “will probably kick the can for another week.” While the Commission was “disturbed” by the state of the independence of Hungary’s judiciary, officials see blocking Hungary’s access to EU recovery funds over rule of law concerns as “legally complex and fragile,” the person said.
A spokesman for the commission declined to confirm or deny reports of delays. “As the in-depth evaluation continues, we will not provide any preliminary evaluation,” they said.
Orban, who faces an election in 2022, last week launched a nationwide poll asking every household about the economy, immigration and the European Union via a series of stereotyped questions. in line with Previous exercisesThe study and accompanying advertisements demonized Hungarian-born financier and philanthropist George Soros, linking him to “illegal immigration”. One of the slogans that caused a new outcry among MEPs read: “George Soros attacks again?” Another asks: “Does Brussels piss you off?”
The survey showed LGBTQ law as a child protection measure, a theme Orbán reiterated in a letter of challenge to the European Union this week. EU leaders accused of ‘evok[ing] colonial instincts long lost” and “making disrespectful statements to authority,” the letter made a strong defense of the law.
“We Central Europeans know what it is like when a state party or a dictatorial regime and the monopoly of power in which it operates, wants to raise children instead of their parents,” the statement read. “We did not allow that to the Communists, so we will not allow these self-proclaimed apostles of liberal democracy to educate children instead of Hungarian parents either.”