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Council of Europe asks government to postpone vote on constitutional amendment

Issues

Council of Europe has called on the Hungarian government to postpone a vote planned for Monday on a fourth amendment to the country’s constitution until the Venice Commission supplies an opinion on the legislation. In a statement on Wednesday the council's Secretary General Thorbjorn Jagland expressed concern that the tabled amendment was not in line with the principles of the rule of law, which are laid out in detail in the founding documents of the Council of Europe. He added that the Hungarian government is aiming to re-introduce temporary measures which had been rendered void by the Constitutional Court earlier. This creates the impression that the government plans to use its two-thirds parliamentary majority to second-guess the constitutional court’s ruling, which may threaten the democratic principle of checks and balances, Jagland said.

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