Press release: Hungary – LGBTI Intergroup asks for clarification in Plenary from the Commission on breaches of EU law following the law adopted by the Hungarian Parliament

Brussels, 22 June 2021

At the initiative of the LGBTI Intergroup, 61 MEPs co-signed and tabled an Oral Question to the Commission concerning potential breaches of EU legislation following the law adopted by the Hungarian Parliament. This procedure, which invites the Commission to provide an oral explanation in plenary, requires a majority support by political groups for its inclusion in the upcoming plenary session of July I, which takes place between 5-8 July 2021.

On 17 June, Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Commissioner for Equality Helena Dalli announced that the Commission was undertaking an inquiry to assess the compliance of the new Hungarian law with EU law.[1]

Liesje Schreinemacher MEP (Renew Europe), Vice-President of the LGBTI Intergroup, comments:

The latest horrible attacks against the LGBTIQ community in Hungary deliberately stigmatise a vulnerable group for political gain. The Hungarian government frames sexual orientation and gender realignment with paedophilia and ‘attacks on children’s rights’. Equality and diversity are part of our European identity – therefore we cannot accept these legislative attacks. When you are a member of the European Union, you sign up to our values. It is not an ‘a la carte’ menu. We are aware that the Commission is conducting a legal analysis to see whether EU law was breached. This is why we asked our colleagues to support an Oral Question so the Commission can present to the Members of this house which follow up actions it is taking.

Maria Walsh MEP (EPP), Vice-President of the LGBTI Intergroup, concludes:

Remaining silent in the face of such attacks is being complacent. This is why we appreciate the Commission’s first response. However, what LGBTIQ citizens and NGOs need is action. While asking for this debate to take place, we are also calling on our colleagues coming from parties in government to contact their leadership and support the General Affairs Council statement that the Benelux initiated, and which will be put out today. Only with unity can we counter the backtracking on the rights of LGBTIQ persons in Hungary.

Background:

Last Tuesday, Hungarian lawmakers passed legislation that prohibits sharing content with minors that is seen as promoting homosexuality or sex reassignment. The law, which was adopted almost unanimously (157 votes to 1), breaches EU values.


[1] Twitter of Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, accessible at  https://twitter.com/vonderleyen/status/1405224693171372035?s=20; Twitter of Commissioner for Equality, Helena Dalli, accessible at https://twitter.com/helenadalli/status/1405230213072576525?s=20.

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