Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, France and Ireland were among the European Union countries that condemned their Hungarian counterpart on Tuesday for a new anti-LGBT law as the bloc refocused on democratic failures in Budapest and nationalism. ally of Warsaw.
The new law banning the “promotion and promotion of homosexuality” under the age of 18 clearly violates the values of the European Union, said the German Minister for European Affairs before talks with its 27 counterparts in the EU for deep concerns that the Hungary and Poland violate the rule of law by violating the freedoms of the judiciary, academia and the media, as well as restricting the rights of women, immigrants and minorities.
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“The European Union is not primarily a single market or a monetary union. We are a community of values, these values bind us all,” Roth told reporters ahead of a meeting in Luxembourg.
“There should be no doubt that minorities, sexual minorities must also be treated with respect.”
Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg issued a joint statement condemning the latest legal changes under Prime Minister Victor Orban as a violation of the right to freedom of expression and a “blatant form of discrimination based on sexual orientation”.
The Swedish minister said Hungarian law was “terrible”, his Dutch counterpart called on Budapest to overturn it, and his Irish counterpart told them that his executive bloc should sue the EU Supreme Court. Austria said it was wrong to park the anti-LGBT provisions in a bill that punishes pedophilia.
“I’m very worried … What happened there is wrong and it must stop,” said Thomas Byrne of Ireland. “This is a very dangerous moment for Hungary, but also for the EU.”
Faced with next year’s election, Orban became increasingly radical in social policy in a self-proclaimed struggle to protect what he says are traditional Christian values from Western liberalism.
Arriving at the same meeting on Tuesday, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said the law only applies to pedophiles.
“The law protects children in a way that makes it the exclusive right of parents to educate their children about sexual orientation until the age of 18,” he said. “This law says nothing about the sexual orientation of adults.”
The other ministers also spoke of concerns about media freedom in Hungary, as well as concerns about the ongoing review of the judiciary by Poland.
Saying Polish courts need reform, the ruling Law and Justice party has ousted many critical judges across the judiciary, introduced more flexible replacements
It recently ignored an order from the EU Supreme Court to stop mining at the Turow plant on the Czech border until a case brought by Prague against Warsaw is settled.
“We have to get assurances from Poland and Hungary that they will really follow what the EU court says in the future,” said Sweden’s Hans Dahlegren.