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Deputy-PM Defends Hungarian Citizenship Process

admin 2014.09.17.

Deputy Prime Minister of Hungary Zsolt Semjén has defended the Hungarian citizenship process after allegations of fraud surfaced on Tuesday. The procedure of granting Hungarian citizenship is strictly controlled by the Hungarian state administration, and, if need be, police and the secret services are also involved in the process, said Semjén.

News portal index.hu reported on Tuesday that a large-scale mafia network has been set up which is specializing in obtaining Hungarian citizenship with false documents by abusing the 2010 law that enabled ethnic Hungarians abroad to get their citizenships in a fast-track procedure. The network has so far obtained Hungarian citizenship and Hungarian passport for several tens of thousands of non-EU, reportedly Russian and Ukrainian, citizens charging them between EUR 5.000 and 30.000, the portal said, calling it a “Hungarian citizenship business.”

Semjén, a sponsor of the 2010 law, told MTI that anyone aware of any case of abuse must report that to authorities. He said that in cases when the system had been abused or attempts had been made perpetrators had been arrested. In response to the web portal’s report, the opposition Socialists called for the dismissal of Semjén, while Democratic Coalition party proposed a joint session of parliament’s law enforcement and national security committees to review the procedure of granting Hungarian citizenship.

via index.hu, HungaryMatters, MTI photo László Kászoni