DH NEWSDH Latest NewsLatest NewsNEWSInternational

Orban wins a sweeping victory as Ukraine war confirms his support

Hungary’s nationalist Prime Minister Viktor Orban won re-election by a landslide for the fourth time in a row on Sunday, as voters backed his vision of a conservative, illiberal state and dismissed worries about Budapest’s tight connections with Moscow.

In recent weeks, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine appeared to upend Orban’s campaign, putting him into embarrassing manoeuvring to explain decade-long cosy economic links with President Vladimir Putin.

He did, however, wage a successful campaign to persuade his Fidesz party’s core electorate that the six-party opposition alliance led by Peter Marki-Zay vowing to restore ties with the European Union could lead the country into war, a claim disputed by the opposition.

Surrounded by senior party members, a triumphant Orban, 58, declared that his victory on Sunday came against all odds.

‘We have achieved such a massive triumph that it can be seen from the Moon,’ he declared. ‘We supported Hungary’s sovereignty and liberty.’

Preliminary results showed Orban’s Fidesz party ahead with 53.1 percent of votes vs 35 percent for Marki-opposition Zay’s alliance, with almost 98 percent of national party list votes counted. Fidesz also won 88 of the 106 single-member districts.

According to early figures, Fidesz would have 135 seats, a two-thirds majority, and the opposition alliance would have 56 seats. Our Homeland, a far-right group, would also gain seven seats in parliament.

His easy victory may embolden Orban, 58, in pursuing a policy agenda that critics say undermines democratic principles, media freedom, and the rights of minorities, including homosexual and lesbian people.

Marki-Zay, 49, admitted loss and blamed Fidesz’s victory on what he called the party’s huge propaganda machine, which included media control.

‘I don’t want to disguise my dissatisfaction, my despair… We were aware that there would be an uneven playing field,’ he stated. ‘We admit that Fidesz received a massive majority of votes. However, we continue to debate whether this election was democratic and free.’

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) dispatched a full-fledged election monitoring mission for the poll, just the second such endeavour in a European Union member country.


Post Your Comments

Back to top button