Hungary to Construct New Border Fence and Draft Laws to Stop Asylum Seekers

Hungary considers asylum seekers and refugees as a concrete threat to its national security since terror attacks in Europe started. They have been enacting fences, with the first completed in 2015, now a second fence on the southern border with Siberia is under construction. Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s right-wing government has endorsed policies of President Donald Trump while rejecting to take asylum seekers, which is against policies currently in place by the European Parliament.

Moreover, Hungary has also started to work on new draft laws that may allow its government to detain asylum seekers and refugee families, including children aged 14 to 18 who are unaccompanied by parents in certain transit zones, returning them back to Serbia. Deputy director of the Europe and Central Asia division at Human Rights Watch, Benjamin Ward said, “The European Commission should not stand by while Hungary makes a mockery of the right to seek asylum. Using transit zones as detention centers and forcing asylum seekers who are already inside Hungary back to the Serbian side of the razor-wire fence is abusive, pointless, and cruel.”

Human Rights Watch has for years raised concerns over violence and chaos Hungarian officials have resorted to at the Siberian border. After the law is passed, asylum seekers can only get protection through transit zones, if they have not entered it from Serbia or from any of the safe third country list that includes Serbia. If they had, they would be returned or detained. Only 25 applications per week are entertained, amongst over thousands that stay pending.

References

https://www.hrw.org/news/2017/02/27/hungary-draft-law-tramples-asylum-seekers-rights

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-europe-migrants-hungary-fence-idUSKBN16614A

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