Senior Eurocrat Guy Verhofstadt has sent a campaign van on a tour of Brussels with a slogan saying that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán “wants to destroy Europe.”
The ardent EU federalist, known for his bombastic attacks against European conservatives and patriots, attempted to troll Mr Orbán by arranging for the van drive past the Hungarian Embassy in Brussels several times during the next week before making its way to Hungary.
The mobile billboard shows a picture of the Hungarian conservative with the text: “First he took our money, now he wants to destroy Europe.”
Addressing media standing next to the van Tuesday, the European Parliament’s chief Brexit coordinator said: “At next year’s European elections, Liberals and Democrats will lead the counter-movement against right-wing populists who conspire to bring the EU down and remove people’s rights.
Orbán uses EU taxpayers' money to turn people against the EU & build a corrupted illiberal state. Here is our answer https://t.co/z9HTkojs1g
— Guy Verhofstadt (@guyverhofstadt) November 6, 2018
The Alliance of Liberals and Democrats in Europe group in the European Parliament, chaired by Verhofstadt, is working with the left-wing Hungarian party Momentum, organising action against Prime Minister Orbán, with the MEP adding: “Together with our liberal Hungarian party Momentum, we will show the Hungarian citizens what is going on in their country.
“We will send the truck to Hungary and intensify our values campaign. It is time for pro-Europeans to take the lead. Hungarians and Europe deserve better than Orbán.”
— EU Busters (@EU_Buster) November 6, 2018
Hungarian government spokesman Zoltán Kovács hit back at the “performance,” saying that Verhofstadt and his “liberal cronies” were attacking Hungary because of the country’s refusal to accept the bloc’s open borders policies and economic migrants from the Global South.
“They want to transform Europe into an immigrant continent and Hungary into an immigrant country,” Mr Kovács wrote, condemning Verhofstadt’s left-wing progressive “designs.”
“The Government of Hungary, however, will continue the campaign and the policy that it has initiated, because on numerous occasions,” recently in the general election in April where the Prime Minister won his third consecutive term in a parliamentary supermajority.
— Zoltan Kovacs (@zoltanspox) October 13, 2018
“The Government will be sticking to its position, because the people of Hungary have made it clear on numerous occasions that they do not want to live in an immigrant country,” he added.
In October, the Hungarian government released a video calling out the “reckless” EU’s mass migration policies, and vowed to “shake up Brussels” in May’s European Parliament election, where right-wing, patriotic, and populist parties are set to make gains.
The advertisement took aim at Verhofstadt, opening with a picture of the Eurocrat with a voiceover artist saying, “This is Guy Verhofstadt. He wants more migration,” before cutting to a clip of the Belgian stating, “we need migration.”