Orban declares state of emergency over war in Ukraine

Budapest (dpa) – Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban imposed a state of emergency in his country because of the war in neighboring Ukraine. The regulation comes into force on Wednesday 00.00 CLOCK CEST, the right-wing national politician announced in a video on his Facebook page.

The state of emergency allows Orban to repeal existing laws and take coercive measures by decree. Orban had had the constitutional basis for this kind of emergency created in parliament only a few hours earlier. With the two-thirds majority of the right-wing national Fidesz Party, the People’s Representation approved the corresponding constitutional amendment. Accordingly, the government can declare a state of emergency if a neighboring country is affected by an armed conflict, a war or a humanitarian catastrophe.

Ukraine, against which Russia has been waging a war of aggression for three months, is one of Hungary’s neighbors. Orban has only half-heartedly condemned Moscow’s aggression. He does not allow weapons deliveries to Ukraine to pass through his country. Only a fraction of the Ukrainian refugees who have come to Hungary so far have also applied for asylum there. In the EU, Orban is blocking the planned oil import embargo against Russia with a veto threat.

By the end of the month, the corona emergency is also in effect in the Donauland. Orban had imposed it on Orban at the beginning of the corona pandemic in spring 2020, the parliament had extended it several times since then. The power-conscious head of government, who has been in office since 2010, also used it for purposes that could hardly be justified by managing the health situation. These included measures to financially damage opposition-governed municipalities or to provide benefits to businessmen close to the government.