The Hungarian government has outlined its ‘Stop Soros’ legislative package, which will punish NGOs and activists facilitating illegal immigration.
George Soros is considered one of the main drivers of mass migration by Hungarian leader Viktor Orbán, with the billionaire financier accused of lobbying the European Union to open its borders and funding ‘civil society’ organisations which help illegal migrants to infiltrate the bloc.
“The new ‘Stop Soros’ legislative package puts forth a more rigorous response by declaring illegal immigration a grave threat to Hungary’s national security,” announced government spokesman Zoltán Kovács.
“Anyone involved in aiding or abetting illegal migration would be committing a criminal offence.”
Amendments to the Police Act, the Penal Code, the Act on Asylum, the Act on the State Border and the Act on Misdemeanours will make it clear that “arranging asylum status for an illegal immigrant or enabling someone who has entered Hungary illegally to acquire residence rights will be seen as facilitating unlawful immigration” and punished with a prison term of between 5 and 90 days.
“Committing such offences on a regular basis, providing financial support for illegal immigration or assisting illegal immigration in exchange for money will constitute felonies, and as such will be punishable by prison sentences of up to one year,” Kovács added.
“Examples of this include publishing or distributing information material with the aim of promoting illegal migration or organising border monitoring along Hungary’s external border.”
The law will also empower courts to permanently expel foreign nationals who become involved in “human trafficking, illegal border crossing, damaging the border barrier, preventing construction works on the border barrier, and facilitating illegal migration”.
Kovács was clear that the purpose of the legislation — which the government hopes to pass through the Hungarian parliament by June 20th — is to “emphasise that the issue of migration falls exclusively within the authority of the national government, affirming our rightful national sovereignty on this issue.”
This represents a direct challenge to the EU, which has been attempting to assert its right to force migrants on unwilling member-states since it introduced compulsory quotas through a Qualified Majority Vote in 2015.
Hungary, Poland, and other like-minded Central European countries have resisted these quotas from the moment they were imposed, and have so far evaded sanctions by supporting each other at the EU level — to the great anger of the bloc’s federalist establishment.