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Democratic Norms ‘Function Well’ in Hungary, Fidesz MEP says ahead of Article 7 Debate

MTI-Hungary Today 2020.01.15.

Fidesz MEP Tamás Deutsch, speaking ahead of a debate in the European Parliament on the Article 7 procedure against Hungary, insisted that democratic norms in the country functioned well and “there’s no problem with the rule of law”.

Deutsch told a joint press conference held with two other Fidesz MEPs that the debate marked “the next phase” in the Hungarian opposition’s political activities directed against their own country.

Hungary, he said, had no bigger rule-of-law problems than any other EU member state.

Deutsch complained that Hungarian opposition MEPs were focusing their political activities on “doing as much harm as possible to their own country”.

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“The Hungarian government …. has asked the European Council to put an end to this procedure which was launched illegitimately and built on lies,” Deutsch said.

Enikő Győri said that the European Parliament had adopted a resolution against Hungary in “a dubious legal procedure” in the autumn of 2018.

She expressed concern over the text which she said sought to give the EP powers that EU treaties had originally not assigned to the body.

“The EP seeks to obtain the right for its members to participate in sessions of the council of European Union member states,” Győri said.

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Legal services of EU institutions have established that this is not possible, she said, adding that the EP would want to adopt a resolution after Wednesday’s debate that was in conflict with the provisions in basic treaties.

Győri also expressed concern about the EP’s move aiming to include issues in the Article 7 procedure “scrutinising” the state of the rule of law in Hungary that the 2018 resolution had not covered.

“This would not stand in any legal proceeding,” she said.

Győri called it “extremely serious” and said it went against every EU law for an institution that had initiated a scrutiny of the rule of law to make unlawful proposals.

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Hungary, a country that endorses values enshrined in EU charters and the rule of law, fully rejects this, she said.

Balázs Hidvéghi called the Article 7 procedure launched against Hungary and Poland a “cynical and outrageous move” by the Socialists.

Featured photo by Szilárd Koszticsák/MTI