Hungary’s Orban seeks backing of EU right for emergency powers
Brussels: Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban is seeking conservative backing to remain within Europe’s main centre-right political bloc despite concerns over his adoption of emergency powers to rule by decree.
The nationalist leader argues he needs unchecked authority to combat the coronavirus epidemic, but opponents accuse him of launching a power grab under cover of the crisis.
Brussels has expressed concern and vowed to monitor developments, as calls mount for the European People’s Party (EPP) to throw the Hungarian leader’s governing Fidesz party out of their group.
Orban has contacted leading EPP figures — including, in a letter obtained by AFP, the powerful head of Germany’s CDU, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer — appealing for support, party figures said.
Opposing him is EPP president and former Polish leader Donald Tusk, who is lobbying the affiliate parties in the EU member states to reconsider their support for Fidesz’s place in their ranks. – AFP