Hungary's PM rejects EU criticism of his government's policies,

Opposition to Orban's vision does not just come from the left as there is disquiet in the main centre right European People's Party, about his position despite the grouping including his Fidesz party

Opposition to Orban's vision does not just come from the left as there is disquiet in the main centre right European People's Party, about his position despite the grouping including his Fidesz party

Accused of infringing on the fundamental values of the EU and referred to in this connection by a procedure unique to the european Parliament, the Hungarian Prime minister-national conservative Viktor Orban, member of the EPP group, has denounced Tuesday in Strasbourg, any "blackmail" aimed at making it deviate from its uncompromising position towards migrants.

On Wednesday the European Parliament voted 448-197 in favor of a report recommending the launch of a so-called Article 7 procedure, which could lead to the suspension of Hungary's EU voting rights.

While voices were heard criticizing Orban in Strasbourg Tuesday, his Fidezs party is a member of the European People's Party (EPP) political group, the largest party in the European Parliament.

The vote was based on a report that voiced concerns about judicial independence, corruption, freedom of expression, academic freedom, religious freedom, and the rights of minorities and refugees under eight years of Orban rule.

Asked about his expectations about the result of Wednesday's vote on the report, Orban said he was sure it would gather the two-thirds support needed for approval and then attempts would be made to expel Fidesz from the EPP.

"Democracy in our member states and in our European Union can not exist without the rule of law", Timmermans said, and went on to list concerns about fundamental rights, corruption in Hungary and the treatment of migrants.

The so-called "nuclear-option" procedure could ultimately strip Hungary of European Union voting rights.

"I have always been in favour of building bridges and I want to continue to do so, but yesterday (Tuesday) I didn't see any readiness from the Hungarian PM to make a move towards his European Union partners and address our concerns", Mr Manfred tweeted.

Orban, who won a third consecutive term in power this year, has previously locked horns with European Union leaders over his country's hardline immigration policies and for clamping down on democratic institutions - including civic organizations, the media and academic institutions - as he consolidated his power.

The EU Commission, the bloc's executive body, launched Article 7 proceedings against Poland over an alleged erosion of judicial independence late previous year.

After the vote, Sargentini thanked her colleagues for standing up "for the protection of democracy and the rule of law, above their interest in party politics". "Hungary has been condemned because they know that it would never accept pro-migrant policies".

Orban has said the mostly Muslim refugees pose an existential threat to Europe's Christian civilisation.

Kovacs also suggested that the alliance with Fidesz boosts the EPP's appeal to European voters.

The vote, however, has little chance of ending up with the ultimate penalty of Hungary being suspended from voting in the EU.

The 12 chapters of the report condemn the disintegration of the rule-governed state and the Socialists agree with its findings concerning the administration of justice, constitutionality, and social affairs, the faction leader of the party told Hungarian media. He closed the borders for Islamic fortune seekers.

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