The Venice Commission, which advises on constitutional matters, has called on Hungary to put on hold a controversial bill that would make it illegal for citizens and organisations to assist undocumented migrants. The government has been urged to wait until the Council of Europe’s advisory body announces its opinion about the bill on June 22.
As reported by the Reuters news agency, the bill is part of Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s campaign against EU migration policies and against George Soros, a Hungarian-born US financier known for funding liberal causes. Parliament is due to vote on it on June 20.
As previously reported, the government says the bill, which would impose a 25% tax on foreign donations to NGOs that back migration in Hungary, is meant to deter illegal immigration, which Orban says is eroding European stability and has been stoked in part by Soros.
The bill says that NGOs that “sponsor, organise or support the entry or stay of third-country citizens on Hungarian territory via a safe third country to extend international protection… qualify as organisations supporting migration”.