Last week it was immigration. This week it is the death penalty. What will Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s media handlers dream up next?
Speaking in Pécs on Tuesday, Orbán said the death penalty is something that is still on the agenda as a deterrent against crime. The prime minister visited Pécs to sign an agreement with Fidesz mayor Zsolt Páva regarding the national government’s “modern cities” program.
Is the return of the death penalty still up for debate? Definitely not in the European Union. The European Convention on Human Rights explicitly bans corporal punishment. The Fundamental Law, Hungary’s constitution hastily passed by Orbán in 2011, also states that the right to life is an inalienable right for everyone.
Fidesz’s parliamentary fraction leader Antal Rogán agrees with papa bear. Rogán says the issue is a legitimate one because Hungarian society hasn’t had an opportunity to decide for itself whether or not it wants to have the death penalty.
Rogán reasons that it was the Constitutional Court that banned the practice, not a referendum or parliament.
Hungarian news website HVG.hu reports that Rogán’s feeling on the matter may have changed since 2004 when he voted in parliament to reaffirm the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights (signed in Rome), which bans the death penalty in all its forms.
Referenced in this article:
Rogán Antal szerint azért kell elővenni a halálbüntetés témáját, mert erről az alkotmánybíróság és nem a nép képviselői döntöttek, bár tíz éve éppen ő, és nem az alkotmánybíróság szavazott a kérdésről, 444.hu; 29 April 2015.