Hungary is no longer a “full democracy” and the European Union needs to do everything to bring it back into line with European values, the European Parliament said on Thursday.
MEPs voted 433 in favour, 123 against, to now describe Hungary — ruled by populist Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who maintains close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin — “a hybrid regime of electoral autocracy” in “serious breach” of EU democratic norms.
The vote was largely symbolic and does not change the course of the Union’s decision making, which requires unanimity of all 27 member states — including Hungary — to adopt major issues, such as sanctions on Russia.
With their vote, the EU lawmakers roundly adopted a parliamentary resolution that said Hungary has been backsliding on democratic and fundamental rights since 2018 through the “deliberate and systematic efforts of the Hungarian government”.
The report said lack of action by EU institutions had exacerbated the degradation.