The rest of the continent must take a stand against this rotten regime! – says the Guardian about Mr Orbán

Author: magyarip Original title: Az egész kontinensnek fel kell lépnie ez ellen a rohadt rezsim ellen! – írja Orbánról a Guardian
Publication: 444.hu Date: 22:59 06/09/2015

The rest of the continent must take a stand against this rotten regime! – says the Guardian about Mr Orbán

Viktor Orbán had to face some serious criticism abroad this Sunday. The Austrian Chancellor depicted him to the Austrian public as a liar and an incapable man, and the President of one of Switzerland’s governing parties stated he should be banned from the country.

And if this wasn’t enough for just one day, one might recall that the English press is also reviling the Hungarian Prime Minister.

The former Ambassador asks the Hungarian people to show compassion and humanity to counter Mr Orbán’s cruelty.

Eleni Kounalakis, American Ambassador to Hungary between 2010-13, has written a long editorial on the Hungarian refugee crisis.

The title: Hungary’s Xenophobic Response.

Kounalakis thinks it is worrisome that Hungary detains and harasses people trying to flee war zones. She thinks that if we are to understand the logic behind this behaviour, we must get to know Viktor Orbán, the powerful leader of Hungary. Orbán has been systemically dismantling or weakening democratic institutions since 2010. And when, in 2012, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warned him that this was not a good direction, his reaction was to speed things up.

The article describes the fence, the anti-refugee billboard campaign, and the fact that Hungarian police wanted to move refugees into camps by tricking them. At the same time, however, the author also mentions the thousands of citizens who have helped the refugees by working as volunteers or offering donations.

Ms Kounalakis conjectures that it is not EU protocol that requires Mr Orbán to make life even harder for asylum-seekers; he just wants to set an example and demonstrate that they should not come to Europe in the first place.

She also quotes Mr Orbán’s article in FAZ, where he worries about the arrival of Muslims and fears the end of Christian culture in Europe.

Ms Kounalakis, however, is concerned that Orbán’s views may also gain ground elsewhere in Europe. The American diplomat highlights that the European Union’s reaction to the crisis is rather slow, and subject to internal clashes. She is worried that the xenophobic views of Mr Orbán and the like may fill the leadership vacuum. She calls on every Hungarian and European citizen to stand up and show compassion and humanity.
Mr Orbán reviled by The Guardian’s leading editorial

“The rest of the continent must stand up against this rotten regime!” – thus begins The Guardian’s leading editorial, entitled: Orbán the awful.

The article strikes a similar tone to that of the USA diplomat: the Hungarian government makes life miserable for asylum seekers. They recall that Hungary sent the police to attack desperate people with teargas, and tried to trick everyone into moving into camps. The editorial states it is a disgrace for the administration, and will most probably stain the reputation of the entire nation. On the other hand, they also mention volunteers, indicating that Hungary as a whole is not as callous as the administration.

The editorial then contains a historic review: Mr Orbán has trampled on democratic principles and, as an ally to Mr Putin, tried to undermine EU initiatives to make a strong stand on the war in Ukraine.

They claim the situation in Hungary is getting worse with each passing day. They quote the new legislation, which would strengthen the power of the police and empower them to put refugees crossing the fence in jail.

The Guardian is also concerned that the xenophobic views of Mr Orbán might spread, as the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Poland have already sided with him on the issue of refugee quotas. The paper claims that such a narrative must be tackled head-on, before chauvinism gains further ground in Europe. As for Mr Orbán’s references on Muslims and the 150-year invasion of Hungary by the Ottomans in his Brussels speech, The Guardian has only one word: disgrace.

The paper calls on European politicians to hold Mr Orbán accountable and to repudiate these toxic words. He tries to hide behind EU law when making excuses, but in vain, as it is bright as day that his claims actually counter the spirit of Europe.
The article concludes: “EU institutions have failed up till now to hold him accountable for trampling on Europe’s values – now is the time to do so”.

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