Strasbourg: debate on the situation in Hungary in the European Parliament

Strasbourg: debate on the situation in Hungary in the European Parliament

2012. 01. 19.

Kinga Gál, Vice-Chair of the Justice and Home Affairs Committee, also contributed to the debate.

“Dear Mr President, dear colleagues,

I have been a member of this House since 2004. Over these years several fundamental freedoms have been violated and these violations were not based on rumours. Just think of Budapest in the autumn of 2006, even the Strasbourg Court of Human Rights highlights this as a serious infringement of fundamental rights. However, back then, it appears that you were not as sensitive to fundamental rights, because it concerned a socialist government.

That is what many others and I call a double standard. This is unacceptable.

To respond to the assumptions that question compliance with the accession criteria, I have to highlight that several member states would not fulfil the current accession criteria. Just as an example, in some states there is a lack of protection of national minorities.

Twenty years after the end of Communism, we finally arrived at the point where Hungary is able to align its legal system with European principles. This is in the interest of the economy, but even more in the interest of the majority of the Hungarians, because our basic law has not been updated at all for the last twenty years.

Over these decades, we had to wait years for one court judgment. Hundreds of fake churches received subsidies. National minorities had no parliamentary representation. Because of an imbalance in the constituencies, people’s votes did not count the same.

The fact that you do not agree with all of our statutory provisions and that the Commission expects correction in some cases is only understandable if they are based on evidence.

We cannot accept that you, based on a far-fetched press campaign declare Hungary as a dictatorship, and that you question the electorate’s free and democratic decision.

When I asked my colleagues if they have read the new law, they said that they only read the articles in the different newspapers concerning the law.”