An “irresponsible” migration policy on the part of the European Union has stoked religious intolerance in western Europe that is threatening Jews in the bloc, according to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s office.
The PM’s office issued the statement a week after Orban was re-elected by a landslide to a third straight term. As reported by the Reuters news agency, Orban won with a fierce anti-immigrant campaign that vilified Hungarian-born, Jewish-American tycoon George Soros for promoting liberal open-door values in Hungary and elsewhere in central and eastern Europe.
The right-wing nationalist premier has presented himself as the saviour of Hungary’s sovereignty and Christian values against what he calls an “invasion” of Muslim migrants. His office used the occasion of Hungary’s Holocaust Remembrance Day to reiterate its strong criticism of EU migration policies.
Calling for Europe to return to its Judaeo-Christian traditions, Orban said: “The religious intolerance that threatens Europe – which is a direct consequence of the irresponsible migration policy of Brussels – has translated into unprecedented violence in the western half of the continent.”
According to Reuters, Orban believes his government’s policy of rejecting migrants also serves the interests of European Jewish communities.
However, Orban has drawn strong condemnation by western EU and US for drafting so-called “Stop Soros” legislation that would slap a 25% tax on foreign donations to NGOs that the government says back migration in Hungary.