The Democratic Coalition (DK) said that the government has started preparations for Hungary to leave the European Union. DK deputy leader Csaba Molnár said that a valid referendum would be a prelude to leaving the community, and urged supporters to boycott the vote.
"Those who stay away will by default vote for Hungary's remaining a member," he argued. The Együtt party said the quota referendum went against Hungary's interests. In a statement, the party accused the prime minister of using the referendum campaign as means to increase his power and wealth. The party said it would start a campaign calling for the boycott of the referendum and a signature drive in support of Hungary's EU membership.
The Socialist Party as well, urged citizens to abstain from voting on the EU's mandatory migrant quota scheme, arguing that the referendum was designed to pave the way for Hungary's exit from the EU. Socialist Party deputy leader Zoltán Gőgös said Hungary would hold two referendums in the near future: the quota referendum, which he said was actually a vote on Hungary's EU membership, and one on preventing the further sale of state-owned farmland, which Gőgös called a referendum on the Fidesz government. The referendum on land sales is at the current stage an initiative for which the Socialists have collected the required 200,000 signatures, he said, adding that the Election Office has yet to certify these.
With its senseless and invalid referendum question and hate mongering, the Dialogue for Hungary (PM) party's spokesperson said, the Fidesz party is seeking to divert attention from real problems such as poverty, low wages, corruption and the ailing health-care and education sectors. Bence Tordai called on voters to boycott the referendum.
President János Áder has set the date for the government-initiated referendum on the EU's mandatory migrant quota scheme for October 2. In the referendum, Hungary's voters will be asked: "Do you want to allow the European Union to mandate the resettlement of non-Hungarian citizens to Hungary without the approval of Parliament?" The prime minister's cabinet chief encouraged voters to participate in the referendum and reject "Brussels' forced settlement" scheme. Antal Rogán insisted it was "up to Hungarians to decide who they want to live together with". He said the governmentwould continue placing "informative" advertisements in the papers, but after August 20 they will work on presenting the government's position more clearly and broadly.
At a press conference in Berlin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel was asked whether she was concerned that the Hungarian referendum would exacerbate divisions within the EU. Merkel said the Hungarian prime minister's opinion on migrants is already known, and she did not expect any change from the referendum to the current situation.
Last Updated on Friday, 15 July 2016 08:19