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MEPs accuse Budapest of hypocrisy over Brussels sex party scandal

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József Szájer MEP European Parliament
József Szájer MEP European Parliament   -   Copyright  Mathieu CUGNOT/ European Union 2019 - Source : EP
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Hungary should stop its anti-LGBT stance after an MEP from the ruling party Fidesz was caught at a lockdown "sex party", say activists.

József Szájer resigned on Sunday but it wasn't until yesterday that he admitted to attending the illegal event in Brussels.

Szájer, a founding member of Fidesz, was one of the authors of the Hungarian constitution that defined marriage as being between a man and a woman.

"I really encourage Mr Szájer and [Hungarian prime minister] Mr Orbán now to break with the politics of the past and to stand up for LGBT+ rights, this is the time to stand up for human rights," said Belgian LGBT activist Rémy Bonny. "We are all equal and every Hungarian should be equal. There are no second class Hungarians," said Rémy Bonny, Belgian LGBI activist.

Belgian media reported Friday's event as being an illegal sex party above a cafe in central Brussels, attended by mostly men.

Szájer, according to the Public Prosecutors Office, had tried to escape by fleeing along a gutter, before police caught up with him.

For other MEPs, the scandal has shone a spotlight on the hypocrisy of the ruling party in Budapest.

"The case of Mr Szájer shows that there is an enormous gap between the rhetoric and the practice of leading Fidesz MPs, MEPs or mayors," said Hungarian MEP Márton Gyöngyösi.

French MEP Manon Aubry said: "He is enjoying the freedom of LGBTI community here in Brussels and at the same time, his party is condemning the LGBTI community in back in Hungary."

"He was even one of the main writers of the constitution that criminalises that community in Hungary," she added.

Dutch MEP Sophie in 't Veld told Euronews: "People in Hungary should ask themselves, who do we have in front of us? How credible, how honest is Mr Orbán? Or is he just instrumentalising the hatred against one group in the population for his own political gains?"

Szájer's European Parliament mandate ends officially on December 31st, but he has already stepped back from the political life.

Last month Hungary’s government has proposed draft legislation that would ban adoption for same-sex couples. In May the country's parliament passed a bill that stopped trans people from being able to alter their gender and name on official documents, such as identity documents and marriage certificates.