The largely symbolic move comes as Brussels reportedly prepares to slash funding to Hungary
FILE PHOTO: Members of the European Parliament take part in a voting session on renewable energy during a plenary session at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, France, September 14, 2022 © AFP / Frederick Florin
The European Parliament voted on Thursday to brand Hungary an “electoral autocracy.” The symbolic declaration comes as the rift between Budapest and Brussels widens, with the EU accusing Hungary of corruption and Prime Minister Viktor Orban of breaking with the bloc on immigration and anti-Russian sanctions.
In a 433 to 123 vote, the parliament agreed to no longer consider Hungary a “democracy,” and instead to label it a “hybrid regime of electoral autocracy.”
In its report on Hungary’s political system, EU lawmakers alleged that the country’s elections and judicial independence are compromised, and that Orban’s government has restricted the rights of migrants, minorities, and the LGBT community. The report’s conclusions were based on an “increasing consensus among experts,” the document read.
Hungary countered that the report “is based on subjective opinions and politically biased statements,” and is “yet another attempt by the federalist European political parties to attack Hungary and its Christian-democratic, conservative government.”