Hungary passes anti-immigrant ‘Stop Soros’ laws


Hungary’s parliament has passed a series of laws that criminalise any individual or group that offers to help an illegal immigrant claim asylum. The legislation restricts the ability of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to act in asylum cases and was passed in defiance of the European Union and human rights groups. Under the law, officially called “Stop Soros”, individuals or groups that help illegal migrants gain status to stay in Hungary will be liable to prison terms.

Parliament also passed a constitutional amendment stating that an “alien population” cannot be settled in Hungary – a swipe at Brussels over its migrant quota plan. The prime minister Viktor Orbán’s right-wing Fidesz party has a two-thirds majority in the chamber. “The Hungarian people rightfully expects the government to use all means necessary to combat illegal immigration and the activities that aid it,” Interior Minister Sandor Pinter wrote in a justification attached to the draft legislation.

“The STOP Soros package of bills serves that goal, making the organisation of illegal immigration a criminal offence. We want to use the bills to stop Hungary from becoming a country of immigrants,” he said.  Fidesz was re-elected by a landslide in April after a campaign attacking the US billionaire George Soros and the liberal NGOs he supports. Orbán believes Soros has encouraged mass immigration in order to undermine Europe.(theguardian)…[+]