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Jun 21, 2018

Hungary’s parliament passes “Stop Soros” legislative package

The bills contained in the package, submitted by the interior minister and requiring a two-thirds majority to pass, was approved with 160 votes in favor and 18 against

Hungary’s parliament has passed the “Stop Soros” legislative package, which penalizes activities in support of illegal migration.

The bills contained in the package, submitted by the interior minister and requiring a two-thirds majority to pass, was approved with 160 votes in favor and 18 against.

The bills contain amendments to the penal code that sanction entities or organizations that “facilitate illegal migration” or help with the asylum application procedures of migrants arriving from safe countries.

According to MTI, the bills define the promotion of illegal migration as an organized activity supporting a person not in danger of persecution to submit an asylum request or to obtain a title of residence.

The law states that financially supporting illegal migration, gaining from it financially or undertaking such activities within 8km of the border are punishable with a prison sentence up to one year.

Surveillance of the border, gathering or distributing information, and setting up or running a network will also qualify as organization of migration, under the new law.

Under the new bill, Parliament also changed the refugee law, under which asylum applications submitted by persons arriving from safe countries shall be rejected.

The new package is in line with the Geneva Convention, which ensures protection to those only that arrive directly from lands where their life or freedom are in danger.

Under the proposal, parliament has changed the law on Hungary’s borders, stipulating that anyone being prosecuted under charges of crimes in connection with border protection shall be banned from within 8km of the border, except for people who have been residents in that zone for at least five years.

The new laws will take effect on the first day of the month following its publication.