Change.org, a global platform for launching petitions, has called on the European Peoples’ Party, the EU’s largest political family, to eject Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party, following the transformation of Hungary into an ‘illiberal democracy’.
The petition, addressed to EPP President Joseph Daul and to the leader of the EPP group in the European Parliament Manfred Weber states:
“In recent years, democracy in Hungary has been steadily undermined. Democratic checks and balances have become a thing of the past. Press freedom has been seriously compromised. Most recent legislation seeks to attack academic freedom (Lex CEU) and to stigmatize foreign funded NGOs as “foreign agents”. Meanwhile, the government sponsors an anti-EU “national consultation”, trying to turn a traditionally EU friendly population hostile to the EU. All this happens under the protection of the European People’s Party, in which Hungary’s ruling party is still a member. This has to stop. We cannot and will not imagine that the European People’s Party accepts in its own ranks a party that denies all the values that this group stands for.”
— eppwithoutfidesz (@eppnofidesz) April 24, 2017
Recent developments in Hungary, and in particular the push to close the Central European University founded by George Soros have prompted Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker to break the silence surrounding Orbán’s actions.
Juncker and several Commissioners will meet US financier George Soros next Thursday (27 April) as part of consultations on a new Hungarian law that could close the university he funds in that country, and of legislation targeting foreign-funded NGOs.
At the annual congress of the EPP in Malta on 30 March Orbán fiercely attacked migration, calling it a “Trojan Horse of terrorism.” He also attacked the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).