Wednesday, 12 April 2017

EU in threat over Hungary university and asylum moves - BBC News

EU in threat over Hungary university and asylum moves - BBC News

EU in threat over Hungary university and asylum moves

  • 8 hours ago
  • From the section Europe
A Hungarian soldier patrols at the border fence at the Tompa border station transit zone - expanded to become one of two new detention centres for asylum seekers - on 6 April 2017Image copyrightAFP
Image captionHungary has been widely condemned over plans to forcibly house asylum seekers in shipping containers surrounded by razor wire
The EU has warned it could take legal action against Hungarian legislation cracking down on higher education, non-governmental organisations and asylum-seekers.
The deputy head of the bloc's executive Commission, Frans Timmermans, said it was determined to uphold EU values.
Thousands of Hungarians have protested against laws which could see the closure of a prestigious university.
Hungary is also forcibly housing asylum seekers in secured shipping containers.
There was a serious question whether that was compatible with EU law, Mr Timmermans said at a news conference.
He said the Commission would consider its next steps in coming weeks and would act if there were no positive developments.
"Taken cumulatively, the overall situation in Hungary is a cause of concern for the Commission," Mr Timmermans said.
Hungary's increasingly radical right-wing Prime Minister, Viktor Orban, has declared war on liberalism, reports BBC's Nick Thorpe, in Budapest.
His government has come under growing criticism of its treatment of asylum seekers - including on Monday, when the UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said the container camps would surrounded by razor wire would "have a terrible physical and psychological impact on women, children and men who have already greatly suffered".
Mr Grandi also said he was "very concerned about highly disturbing reports of serious incidents of ill-treatment and violence against people crossing the border into Hungary, including by state agents".

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