Hungary breaking EU law on migrants, Nordic nations say

Hungary's Prime Minister, Viktor Orbán. [European People's Party]

Nordic nations on Wednesday (21 September) called for the EU to take “measures” against Hungary over its reluctance to take in registered asylum-seekers.

In a letter dated September 9, seen by AFP, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden expressed their “great concern” at Budapest’s refusal to act by the Dublin rules under which refugees must seek asylum in the first EU country they enter.

For several months Hungary and its right-wing Prime Minister and fierce Brussels critic Viktor Orbán have opposed receiving back any migrants for whom Hungary was the first EU country in which they registered.

The joint letter, signed by ministers from the five Nordic countries, quotes from a statement sent by Budapest to fellow EU nations in May, which insists that Hungary “cannot accept any incoming Dublin transfers.”

The Nordic ministers agreed that this position constitutes “a violation of the EU law and it is not acceptable,” and called on EU Migration Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos to “act promptly.”

Earlier this month Luxembourg’s Foreign Minister Jean Asselborn said Hungary should be suspended from the European Union for violating democratic core values and treating refugees like “animals.”

Luxembourg foreign minister wants Hungary out of EU

Luxembourg’s foreign minister, Jean Asselborn, has called for Hungary to be thrown out of the European Union. EURACTIV Germany reports.

Austria has also recently threatened to bring a complaint against its neighbour Hungary to the European courts.

Austria threatens non-compliant Hungary with legal action

Austria has threatened Hungary with legal action if the Central European country does not start abiding by EU refugee laws. Budapest remains unmoved. EURACTIV Germany reports.

Hungary also angered its fellow EU member state by issuing a map showing around 900 “no-go areas” in Europe with large immigrant populations, including London, Paris and Berlin.

In July Orbán described the arrival of asylum-seekers in Europe as “a poison”, saying his country did not want or need “a single migrant.”

The Hungarian prime minister has organised a referendum on October 2, seeking a vote against the mandatory division of migrants among EU members.

Hungary has refused to take a single migrant under the EU’s plan for coping with the current crisis, and the referendum will ask voters whether they agree with Brussels mandating the relocation of refugees without the approval of national parliaments.

Hungary readies attacks on Juncker over migration referendum

A spokesman for the Hungarian government, Zoltán Kovács, told a group of Brussels journalists yesterday (19 September) that the so-called ‘migrant quota’ referendum to be held next month in Hungary will expose the “stealth way the EU is working” during the past two years of the Juncker Commission.

Subscribe to our newsletters