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22 May 2017

Dave Uwakwe, MyEurop.info

Hungary: European Parliament's resolution condemns serious deterioration of rule of law, democracy & fundamental rights

"EU moves closer to sanctioning Hungary for “illiberal” drift", 21 May 2017

The European parliament has adopted a resolution condemning the “serious deterioration of the rule of law, democracy and fundamental rights” in Hungary, beginning a process that could, in theory, lead to the country losing its voting rights in the EU Council. Hungary has faced accusations from Brussels and human rights groups that since Viktor Orban’s Fidesz government came to power in 2011 it has clamped down on asylum seekers, tightened rules on NGOs, and threatened press and academic freedom in the country. Following the vote on Wednesday, the EU Parliament’s civil liberties committee will be tasked with drawing up a formal resolution to investigate whether there is a “clear risk of serious breach” of EU values in Hungary. If Hungary fails to address the recommendations set out in the resolution, the EU can, after a series of votes, move to remove Budapest’s voting rights. Last month the EU launched a probe into Hungary’s higher education law that requires third-level institutions to be registered in the EU, a measure which is seen as targeting the US-based Central European University.