EP approves the Sargentini report

Members of the European Parliament in a vote on Wednesday approved the Sargentini report that finds the rule of law in Hungary wanting.

The report authored by Green MEP Judith Sargentini says there is a “clear risk” of a serious breach by Hungary of the values of the European Union and calls for the Article 7 procedure, which ultimately suspends a member state’s voting rights, to be opened.

The report was approved with 448 votes in favour, 197 against and 48 abstentions.

To pass, the report required the backing of an absolute majority of MEPs and a two-thirds majority in the vote itself.

According to press reports, Belgian, Finnish, Greek, Dutch, Polish, Luxembourgian, Austrian, Portuguese and Swedish members of the European People’s Party, of which Hungary’s ruling Fidesz a member, also approved the report.

Following the EP vote, the European Council will decide if fundamental values of the EU are indeed being violated in Hungary in a vote requiring a four-fifths majority.

The Sargentini document enumerates a number of concerns concerning the rule of law in Hungary, its electoral system, the independence of the judiciary, corruption, freedom of expression, assembly and religion, as well as the rights of minorities and asylum-seekers and issues connected with equal opportunity.

Applying Article 7 would require unanimous support by all other EU members, which analysts consider a near impossibility.

Fidesz MEP: Approval of Sargentini report ‘legally invalid’

The Sargentini report was approved through a breach of voting rules and the decision is therefore “legally invalid”, an MEP of ruling Fidesz told a press conference after the vote in Strasbourg on Wednesday.

The report authored by Green MEP Judith Sargentini says there is a “clear risk” of a serious breach by Hungary of the values of the European Union and calls for the Article 7 procedure, which ultimately suspends a member state’s voting rights, to be opened.

MEP Jozsef Szajer said the decision was

“a petty revenge by pro-migration politicians… Hungary has been condemned because they know that it would never accept pro-migrant policies.”

The report is a “show-trial indictment based on lies”, one full of mistakes and distorted facts, he said.

A majority of the issues addressed in the report do not fall under EU jurisdiction, 13 of the 69 critical remarks have already been settled, and there are ongoing infringement procedures regarding many others, he said.

Source: MTI

Photo: European Parliament

Hungary Journal

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s