Irakli Jankarashvili, whose disinformation has been verified by FactCheck multiple times, made the following publication on his Facebook page on 2 January 2023:
“Hungary launches a procedure to leave the EU. It was declared by Prime Minister Viktor Orban during his New Year speech to Hungarian citizens. Orban stated that Hungary was deceived and the EU did not keep its pledges:
‘We were part of the European family and it turned out to be the LGBT family where instead of a mother and a father, parents who are in concentration camps are assigned a child. The Hungarian nation never acquiesced with sodomy and, therefore, we are no longer on the same path with Brussels. We will immediately launch procedures to leave the EU.’”
In fact, this information is not true and its dissemination intends to mislead the public.
Firstly, of note is that Viktor Orban did not have a typical New Year address but instead posted photographs and a video with his New Year’s greetings on 31 December 2022. The text of Orban’s speech and the photographs do not contain the quote which Irakli Jankarashvili and other sources disseminated and Viktor Orban did not announce launching a withdrawal process from the EU nor did he express such a desire.
It is well-known fact that despite the Eurospecticism of Viktor Orban and his government as well as controversies with Brussels, Hungary supports EU membership. For instance, as per Viktor Orban’s statement, Hungary will not leave the EU, although wants to see it reformed. Notably, in light of a recent corruption scandal involving a number of European Parliament members, Mr Orban voiced the idea to reform the European Parliament.
Viktor Orban and his government not only support Hungary’s membership in the EU but embrace EU enlargement and, for instance, advocate for the accelerated integration of the Western Balkans, Ukraine and Georgia.
Of additional note is that at the end of 2022, EU and Hungary reached agreements on numerous issues which further indicates that Hungary does not intend to leave the EU. For instance, the European Commission adopted a common agriculture policy strategic plan for Hungary, it also deals with Hungary’s economic recovery plan and partly unfreezing funds for Hungary were also agreed.
It is further noteworthy that the disinformation promoted by Irakli Jankarashvili and several other sources was initially published on a satirical Russian website which promotes not real but fabricated and satirical stories.
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