European Parliament Votes to Trigger Article Seven Against Hungary

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Washington, D.C.—Human Rights First welcomed today’s vote by the European Parliament triggering so-called Article 7 proceedings against the Hungarian government for undermining democratic values and the rule of law.

“Today’s vote sends a clear message that Hungary’s assault on human rights and the rule of law threaten fundamental transatlantic values, and won’t be tolerated. The U.S. government should do everything in its power to support today’s vote, using its leverage with the Hungarian government to hold it accountable for maintaining the democratic governance so integral to peace and prosperity,” said Rob Berschinski, Senior Vice President for Policy at Human Rights First.

This is the first time E.U. lawmakers have initiated Article 7 of the Treaty on European Union, which can lead to sanctions and suspension of EU voting rights for Hungary. The Hungarian government immediately deemed the vote fraudulent, calling it “petty revenge.”

In May 2018, Human Rights First released a reportHungary’s False Sense of Security, which documents the Hungarian government’s ongoing efforts to undermine its judiciary, stifle civil society, silence journalists, and deepen ties to Russia. 

Next month, Human Rights First will present its annual William D. Zabel Human Rights Award to Márta Pardavi, Co-Chair of the Hungarian Helsinki Committee, for her work promoting fundamental freedoms and the rights of refugees in Hungary and across Europe.

For more information or to speak with Berschinski, contact Christopher Plummer at or 202-370-3310.

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