Washington, DC, April 14 (MTI) – The US Department of State defined the way migrants and asylum seekers are handled among the gravest human rights problems in Hungary in 2015 in its country report published on Thursday.
The report pointed to xenophobic rhetoric and a lack of humanitarian aid, and noted Hungarian legislation passed last year that made illegal crossing a criminal offence punishable with imprisonment and expulsion.
The report cited the UN high commissioner for human rights as characterising the new legislation as “incompatible with the human rights commitments binding on Hungary.”
“This is an entirely unacceptable infringement of the human rights of refugees and migrants. Seeking asylum is not a crime, and neither is entering a country irregularly,” the report quoted the commissioner as saying in September.
As a further problem, the report mentioned a lack of public consultations or negotiations with the opposition when making comprehensive legal changes. It noted international criticism over ” the systematic erosion of the rule of law, checks and balances, democratic institutions, and transparency.”
The report also noted the overcroweded state of prisons in Hungary, physical abuse of prisoners and detainees, lengthy pre-trial detention, detention of migrants and asylum seekers, governmental corruption, media concentration and restricted editorial independence, as well as government pressure and intimidation of civil society.
The document said that further problems were related to domestic violence, sexual harassment of women, anti-Semitism, abuse and inhuman treatment of persons with mental disabilities, social exclusion and discrimination against the Roma as well as verbal abuse and harassment of LGBTI people.
Read here the Hungarian government’s reaction: