Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Saturday announced that his government would support Poland in a political battle against Brussels, which has threatened sanctions against Warsaw.
"The inquisition offensive against Poland can never succeed because Hungary will use all legal options in the European Union to show solidarity with Poles," Orban reportedly said in a televised speech in Baile Tusnad, Romania.
Two days earlier, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjártó said in a statement that Hungary stands by Poland and calls on the European Commission not to overstep its authority.
He added that the Commission wants to meddle into Poland's domestic affairs, and it should not "act like a political body".
European Commission Vice President Frans Timmermans on Wednesday warned that the EU’s executive arm was close to triggering the bloc's Article 7 against Poland, which could ultimately result in sanctions, if a new contentious bill aiming to overhaul the country's judicial system was passed.
In the small hours of Saturday, Polish senators green-lighted controversial legal changes amid protests by the opposition warning that the decision, which followed a stormy debate in both houses of parliament and street protests, undermined judicial independence and the rule of law.
Any potential sanctions against Poland would require unanimity among all other EU member states but Hungary has made clear on several occasions that it would block any such initiative.
Like Poland’s ruling party leader Jarosław Kaczyński, Orban has crossed swords with the EU for years while being accused of disrespect for democratic freedoms.