Budapest (MTI) – The opposition Együtt party will urge its voters to abstain from participating in the Oct 2 referendum on the European Union’s migrant quota scheme, the party’s leader said on Friday.
Viktor Szigetvári told a press conference that his party considers the referendum anti-European and anti-refugee, adding that any vote cast on Oct 2 will only help the government.
The official campaign period for the referendum begins on Saturday.
Szigetvári described the referendum as a “deceitful question” asked by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. “Someone who lies in a question doesn’t even deserve an answer,” Szigetvári said.
In the referendum Hungarians will be asked: “Do you want to allow the European Union to mandate the resettlement of non-Hungarian citizens to Hungary without the approval of parliament?”
Szigetvári said voters should not give Orbán a chance to “use [their] votes however he pleases” and urged them to fight the prime minister’s “hate campaign”.
He said Egyutt believes in showing solidarity in the management of the migrant crisis and wants to guarantee security through European unity. He mentioned the EU’s new border control and management system, migrant quota scheme and registration system as examples of establishing security through partnership.
“Viktor Orbán envisions a weak Hungary that will fall behind and slide to the periphery” of Europe, Szigetvári said, adding that Együtt wants Hungary to work together with its international partners and catch up to leading EU countries.
The ruling Fidesz party responded to Szigetvári’s remarks demanding that Együtt clarify its position on the EU’s “forced settlement” scheme. Fidesz said in a statement that Egyutt’s approach to the question of migrant quotas and the referendum proved that the leftist parties continue to be pro-immigration and want to implement the migrant relocation scheme in Hungary.