Europe refugee crisis & Hungary’s Anti-immigrant ‘Stop Soros’ bill
Recently Indian government releases NRC-The National Register of Citizens list in Assam. Lots of controversy & debate are going on this NRC and Bangladeshi illegal immigrant issue, at the same time India is facing Rohingya issue too. So on this background we should study European refugee crisis and measures taken by countries like Hungary.
Hungary’s staunch nationalist Prime Minister Viktor Orban
After rise of Islamic State (IS), civil war and Arab spring in West Asia (or popularly known as Middle East) millions of Muslim refugees fled to Europe. Industrialist saw opportunity in refugee crisis in terms of cheap labour. They compel their respective governments to accept as much refugees as possible under the disguise of humanity. Those who opposed it were shamed as "xenophobic". Over a time, these refugees alter the demography of small European nations. Terrorism and religious fundamentalism rises in multi-culturalism Europe. Consequently, now these refugees become burden to Europe. Countries who thrown red carpets with door open to refugees, are now thinking to shut this door. Germany had sent back some refugees due to public pressure, even if anti-immigrant and right- wing parties had lost recent elections in Austria and France but they gave tough fight to established parties. Refugee friendly Scandinavian nations now becoming anti-immigrant. Public opinion is becoming rapidly anti-immigrant & Nationalist parties are becoming popular. Anti-immigrant party came to power in Italy & Hungary.
Hungary’s staunch nationalist Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s right-wing Fidesz party contested this year election on the issue of refugee crisis and won by two-thirds majority in the chamber. This mammoth majority is reflecting the degree of anger and outrage in Hungary on refugee issue.
‘Stop Soros’ bill
This anti- immigrant bill officially called as “Stop Soros” bill passed by Hungary Parliament with 160 vs 18 votes on 20 June 2018. As per this law, if individuals or groups/NGO is providing legal and financial aid to illegal migrants to gain status to stay in Hungary will be liable to prison terms. Parliament also passed a constitutional amendment stating that an “alien population” cannot be settled in Hungary. The legislation restricts the ability of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to act in asylum cases and was passed in defiance of the European Union and human rights groups. (The Guardian, 20 June 2018)
Besides security issue, these refugees imposes a heavy burden on Hungary’s economy, so it indirectly affects the Hungarian people & budget, so finance ministry introduced a proposed 25 percent tax to be paid by NGOs that assist immigrants, a provision that was previously on the 'Stop Soros' bill but then later stripped. The government proposes that as a manner of burden sharing, the organisations aiding migration should bear additional taxes. (Al-jazeera, 20 June 2018)
The government also wants to refuse asylum for migrants who reach Hungary after passing through another country where they were not persecuted. That would disqualify many of those who make long journeys through multiple countries before they reach the E.U. "Can there be compromise in the migrant debate? No – and there is no need for it," Orban said during a conference in Budapest over the weekend. EU & UN vehemently opposed this bill but Orban didn’t bother and bill passed it with majority. The government claims that migrants threaten to disrupt Hungary's Christian identity and threaten its national security. (Washington Post, 16 May 2018) Hungary also finished building a fence along southern border.
Who is Soros?
George Soros is 87 year old Hungarian-born U.S. billionaire, investor, philanthropist, political activist, author, founder of Open Society Foundation, proponent of treating refugees on humanitarian standpoint. Hungarian public opine that nothing wrong in this standpoint but Soros has launched aggressive campaign to welcome Muslim refugees in Europe and the hidden objective of the campaign is to get cheap labour for commercial use. 64-year-old woman Gyongyi Horgasz said, “Soros is the mastermind behind the Islamization of Europe.” (The Washington Post, 17 March 2018)
In a March speech, Orban compared kicking Soros-funded organizations out of the country to sending home “the [Ottoman] sultan with his army, the Habsburg Kaiser with his raiders and the Soviets with their comrades.”
Such kind of posters were displayed all over country during Viktor Orban’s ‘Stop Soros’ bill advertisement campaign. (Photo Courtesy: Attila Kisbenedek/AFP/Getty Images)
Actually Soros funded a scholarship for Orban to study political science at Oxford and even helped with the launch of Fidesz, which began as a liberal student movement. So personally Orban must be thankful to Soros but personal gratitude is one thing and national gratitude is another. Therefore Orban didn't hesitate to oppose personal and party benefactor for sake of nation.
Soros is Jew who escaped from holocaust & then become billionaire self- efficiently. Hungary deported 500,000 Jews during the Holocaust. While opposing Soros, many of the posters have been defaced with anti-Semitic graffiti, including the words "stinking Jew". Israel's ambassador to Hungary issued a statement denouncing the campaign, saying it "evokes sad memories but also sows hatred and fear", but Israel's foreign ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon released a "clarification" just hours after the ambassador's comments, "In no way was the statement (by the ambassador) meant to delegitimise criticism of George Soros, who continuously undermines Israel's democratically elected governments." Soros funded Human Rights Watch organization always criticizes Israel’s control over West Bank and their Palestine policy. Similarly, defame the Jewish state and seek to deny it the right to defend itself. (The New Arab, 10 July 2017) Israel indirectly suggests to target Soros only but not Jews. So called pro-democratic Soros is criticizing democratically elected Israel government but have you ever heard him criticizing monarchy, dictatorship regimes surrounding Israel?
Accepting refugee is not permanent solution of the problem. Conversely, terrorist, smugglers or illegal traders can enter into Europe in disguise of refugee. Asylum nation have to bear burden of this population which directly puts pressure on their financial and basic resources. Political parties may use this refugee for vote bank politics by putting national security in danger. But the good thing is that, Hungary’s Prime minister has given priority to nation and public also stand with our leader.
We never heard that European Union, United Nations or other so called humanitarian organizations has sent petitions, memorandum or pressurizing nearby Arab nations to accept this refugees. It’s not surprising if other European countries follows Hungary’s footstep. Europe has accepted this refugees without any vigilance and now they are becoming burden to them which clearly reflects in public opinion. Government & European Union needs to understand intense public opinion and necessary to ponder on how to maintain peace and stability in their (immigrants) own nation.
--- Akshay Jog