The EU Supreme Court found on Thursday that Hungary and Poland broke block rules for both countries in another controversial moment. In one case, the European Court of Justice ruled that aspects of the Hungarian asylum procedure violated EU law. In three separate cases, the way Hungary deals with asylum seekers and Poland’s political interference in its courts have been questioned. For the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban this is the second time this year that the policy of his government has been promulgated by judgments of the EU Court of Justice.
The ruling was a victory for the European Commission that sued the nation.
The new legal battle comes after a crisis in the EU over the Coronavirus Recovery Fund that both Hungary and Poland have blocked.
The heads of state and government pushed for a rule of law mechanism to punish countries whose governments had undermined democracy.
However, since the recovery fund had to be supported unanimously, Hungary and Poland were able to veto the package.
After days of intense negotiations, a compromise was finally reached so that the stimulus funding of GBP 1.6 trillion can now be distributed to the EU27.
That won’t be enough to fix ties in the bloc, however, as many speculate whether recent tensions will lead Hungary or Poland to leave the EU.
Mr Orban hinted at it when the UK left the block in January.
Leaving Britain, he said: “The departure of Britain and the fact that everyone is still in the country shows that there is life outside the EU.”
But in September Orban said that while Brexit showed Britain’s “greatness”, his country would not follow suit.
He added: “Brexit is a brave decision by the British people over their own lives. We consider them to be evidence of the greatness of the British.
“We cannot afford to follow this path. It is reasonable that Hungary is part of the European Union. “
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However, he added that it was “unlikely” that either country would leave the bloc at this point.
Poland’s membership has been questioned by many in the country after concerns about the rhetoric of leaders in Warsaw.
Polish President Andrzej Duda has branded the EU as an “imaginary community of little concern to us”, while Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki recently warned that the bloc could become an “oligarchy”.
Malgorzata Kidawa-Blonska, a politician with the opposition Civic Coalition, recently warned that this rhetoric signaled that “what happened in Britain is beginning to happen here”.
However, opinion polls in Poland are in favor of EU membership of up to 80 percent in some cases, indicating that there is currently little appetite to leave the bloc.