“Hungary faces the loss of its European Union voting rights after MEPs triggered a punitive procedure to prevent EU countries backsliding on democracy, the rule of law and human rights.
In an unprecedented vote that exposed deep EU divisions, the European Parliament in Strasbourg backed a report calling for Hungary to be sanctioned for its crackdown on NGOs, the media and universities.
Budapest’s foreign minister Peter Szijjarto denounced the vote to trigger the “Article 7” procedure as the “petty revenge” of “pro-immigration politicians”.
He also claimed that the vote involved “massive fraud” since abstentions weren’t counted into the final tally, which made it easier to reach the needed majority.
“It is a positive sign of this parliament taking responsibility and wanting action,” Judith Sargentini, the Dutch Green MEP who spearheaded the vote, said.”