Hungarian questionnaire risks spreading xenophobia: UN 


May 22, Budapest: The United Nations human rights watchdog on Friday said that it was shocked by a Hungarian government questionnaire which links migration with terrorism, fearing it could bolster anti-immigration sentiments.

The office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights said in a statement that, “We are shocked by the Prime Minister’s introductory message, which suggests a link between migration and terrorist attacks, including the attack which took place in Paris in early January this year.” It said that, “We are also worried about the phrasing of some of the suggestive, leading questions, which actively promote hostility toward migrants and risk spreading xenophobia within the country.”

The “national consultation” being sent to Hungarian voters seeks to build political support for Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s rejection of immigration and for his call on the European Union to give individual countries more power to set their own immigration policies.

One of the questions asks voters whether they agree with the government that it should support “Hungarian families and children to be born” instead of immigration.

The Budapest office of Amnesty International called for a boycott of the campaign, urging citizens to instead send Orban a letter calling on Hungary to respect the human rights of migrants and refugees and asking him to refrain from using prejudicial rhetoric against them.

“It is a fact that the World is now facing its largest migration crisis since World War II,” Amnesty International said. “Migrants, however, are not criminals and do not represent a threat to Hungarian society.”

Since late 2014, Hungary has seen a huge rise in the number of migrants arriving through its southern border with Serbia. Most quickly move further west to Austria or Germany.

The Oslo Times

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