EU countries condemn Hungary for its anti-LGBTQ law

Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, France and Ireland were among the countries in the European Union which on Tuesday condemned their Hungarian counterpart for a new anti-LGBTQ law as the bloc returned to focus on the democratic failures of Budapest and its nationalist ally Warsaw.

The new law banning “the display and promotion of homosexuality” among those under 18 clearly violates the values ​​of the European Union, the German minister for European affairs said ahead of talks with his 27 counterparts in the EU on deep concerns that Hungary and Poland violate the rule of law by trampling on the freedoms of courts, academics and the media, as well as restricting the rights of women, migrants and minorities.

“The European Union is not above all a single market or a monetary union. We are a community of values, these values ​​bind us all, ”Roth told reporters ahead of the meeting in Luxembourg.

“There should be no doubt that minorities, sexual minorities too, should be treated with respect. “

Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg drafted a joint statement condemning the latest legal changes under Prime Minister Viktor 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 the Hungarian law was “grotesque”, his Dutch colleague called on Budapest to overturn it while his Irish counterpart said the bloc’s executive should sue it in the EU’s highest court. Austria said it was wrong to park anti-LGBTQ provisions in a bill criminalizing pedophilia.

“I am very worried … It’s wrong what happened there and it has to stop,” said Irishman Thomas Byrne. “This is a very, very dangerous moment for Hungary and for the EU as well.

Facing an election next year, Orban has become increasingly radical on social policy in a self-proclaimed fight to safeguard what he says are the traditional Christian values ​​of Western liberalism.

Arriving at the same meeting on Tuesday, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said the law only targets pedophiles.

“The law protects children in a way that makes it an exclusive right of parents to educate their children about sexual orientation up to the age of 18,” he said. “This law says nothing about the sexual orientation of adults.

The other ministers also raised concerns about media freedom in Hungary, as well as concerns about the ongoing overhaul of the judiciary in Poland.

Affirming that Polish courts must be reformed, the ruling Law and Justice party expelled many critical judges across the justice system, introduced more flexible replacements.

It recently ignored an order from the EU’s highest court to stop mining at its Turow factory on the Czech border until the Prague v Warsaw case is resolved.

“We need to get assurances from Poland and Hungary that they will really follow what the European Court says in the future,” said Hans Dahlgren of Sweden.

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