Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Von der Leyen warned Hungary that she would not open the funds if reforms did not continue

The president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, assured this Wednesday that Brussels will not release additional funds to Hungary while Budapest does not resolve its shortcomings regarding the rights of the LGTBIQ+ group, academic freedom, and the right to asylum. , where it still cannot access about 20,000 million euros.

In a debate in the European Parliament about the last summit of European leaders and the situation in Hungary, Von der Leyen also assured that his commissioners will be available to provide more information on why Brussels opened the 10 billion euros in December linked to judicial reform. , an area where there has not been enough progress, according to MEPs.

For Von der Leyen, however, the release of these funds is due to the fact that the legislation approved in May by the government of Viktor Orban “strengthens judicial independence and limits the possibility of political interference in the judiciary” and responds to many recommendations that Brussels sent to Budapest.

“This is what we requested and fulfilled in Hungary. The commissioners informed the Parliament and are ready to provide more information at any time,” said Von der Leyen.

The European Parliament concluded a resolution that will be voted tomorrow, Thursday, in which it proposes to bring the Commission to the Court of Justice of the European Union for the unblocking of these funds because it does not agree with the analysis that the judicial The reform that was approved is enough.

The MEPs also threatened “any legal and political measures at their disposal” if the Community Executive continues to disburse funds without meeting the criteria, a warning that, according to the liberal group, could translate into a motion to criticize the entire Commission. , although this is a step that will take time.

Von der Leyen assured, however, that the 20 billion that remain blocked will remain in that state until Hungary meets the necessary conditions.

The Belgian Foreign Minister, Hadja Lahbib, whose country heads the Council of the EU this first half of the year, assured for his part that the rule of law is at the “center of his political action” and announced that his country will organize a fifth hearing in Hungary within the framework of the rule of law file for this country that has been open to the EU for years.

Finally and unlikely—because it requires unity—this file could remove Budapest’s right to vote in the Council.

World Nation News Desk
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