Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Hungary summons the ambassadors from Norway and the other four Nordic countries following a joint Nordic letter with concerns about the political development and the corona situation in Hungary, reports the Ritzau news agency and the newspaper Politiken.
Over a month after the populist, authoritarian Prime Minister of Hungary, Viktor Orban was granted controversial “rule-by-decree” powers, the five Nordic countries have raised their concerns. Hungary has summoned the ambassadors.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs informs Dagbladet that Norway’s ambassador to Hungary, Olav Berstad , met with the Hungarian authorities this afternoon.
The letter of concern was sent on 6 May to the Secretary General of the Council of Europe. Foreign Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide and her Nordic government colleagues Jeppe Kofoed, Pekka Haavisto, Gudlaugur Thordarson and Ann Linde have signed the letter.
Prominent EU lawmakers had raised concerns about the controversial new law.
“An indefinite and uncontrolled state of emergency cannot guarantee that the basic principles of democracy will be observed,” said Secretary General of the Council of Europe Marija Pejcinovic Buric.
The five northern European foreign ministers “shared the concerns” raised by Buric in the letter sent on 6th of May.
“Even in an emergency situation the law must prevail,” the foreign ministers wrote.
Foreign Minister of Hungary Peter Szijjarto has summoned the ambassadors of the five countries over the comments they made about the controversial law.
Szijjarto said that Hungary “wanted no pitiful hypocritical tutelage” from Iceland, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Sweden.
He claimed all the accusations are fake news and called on the northern European countries to “mind their own business.”
“Neither the Danish, Icelandic, Finnish, Norwegian nor Swedish Foreign Minister know better what is good for the Hungarians than we do,” Hungary’s Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto wrote on Facebook yesterday.
Situation is out of control in Hungary and Orban misuses corona situation
As of Monday, Hungary, with about 10 million inhabitants, had registered 421 corona deaths, according to the Worldometers website.
Hungary’s parliament has passed a new set of coronavirus measures that gives unlimited power to the populist nationalist prime minister, Viktor Orbán with no clear time limit.
The bill supposedly introduces jail terms of up to five years for “spreading misinformation” that hinders the government response to the pandemic, leading to fears that it could be used to censor the criticism of the government response and policies.
Orban has been a controversial figure since he was elected in 2010. The critics blame him of misusing corona ciris for his own political benefits and taking over all power.
He has recently generated fresh controversy in his region by posting on Facebook a historical map of ‘Greater Hungary’- Hungary’s former territory before the end of the First World War.
Croatian President Zoran wrote on Facebook as a response to Orban addressing his people: “Don’t ‘share’ old maps and put them on your profile – they are not relevant or effective today, and more importantly, they are endlessly annoying our neighbours. Croatia is a modern European country and nation … learn from history, but look into the future.”