Hungarian people want to 'stop Soros', Orban says
Budapest (AFP) –
Hardline anti-immigration Prime Minister Viktor Orban said Tuesday that his resounding election victory shows that the Hungarian people want to stop US billionaire philanthropist George Soros interfering in the country.
In a news conference with international media two days after the election, Orban said that his government had already drawn up a "Stop Soros" package of legislation ahead of the vote.
"The reason we submitted this package before the elections is in order to allow the Hungarian voters to cast their vote knowing our intention on this," said Orban, 54.
"This has happened and we believe we are mandated by this election to pass this law."
The election saw Orban's Fidesz party sweep the board with almost half the vote, giving it a two-thirds majority in parliament and with it a legislative free rein.
One of his main campaign promises was to stop the "globalist elite" led by Soros and Brussels undermining Europe's security and Christian culture through mass Muslim immigration.
Images of the Hungarian-born Soros, 87, were plastered on billboards and Orban depicted opposition figures running in the election as "Soros candidates".
Critics said this recalled dark anti-Semitic propaganda of the past with Orban's talk of an "enemy" that is "not national but international" and "speculates with money".
Civil society groups funded by Soros and their staff have long faced bothersome regulations, harassment from local authorities and online abuse and threats.
But the "Stop Soros" package promises to go much further, aping similar laws in Russia, slapping taxes on foreign-funded non-governmental organisations that "support" illegal immigration.
Foreigners deemed to support asylum seekers could be barred from entering Hungary, NGOs staff face being barred from approaching border areas and organisations will undergo "security tests".
© 2018 AFP