LONDON, Sept 22 — Britain has criticised Hungary’s government for a leaflet being distributed there ahead of its referendum on EU migrant quotas which indicates parts of Britain as “no-go areas” due to high numbers of immigrants.
The no-go zones map of Europe came out as a newspaper ad in Hungary several months ago.
It has now been included in the 18-page pamphlet posted to millions of people ahead of the referendum next month.
“This leaflet is clearly inaccurate. There are no areas in the UK in which the laws of the UK cannot be enforced,” Britain's Foreign and Commonwealth Office said in a statement.
The British embassy in Budapest has complained to the Hungarian foreign ministry about the publication.
The Hungarian government said there were around 900 “no-go areas” in Europe with large immigrant populations, including London, Paris and Berlin.
The map showed London marked with a “no-go” sign, which was also placed on five other areas in Britain.
“The so-called ‘no-go’ zones are areas of cities that the authorities are unable to keep under their control,” the leaflet said.
Budapest has said it based the information on openly available data.
“There are no-go zones in Europe and we don't want no-go zones in Hungary,” Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto told the BBC’s Newsnight programme.
Hungary has refused to take a single migrant under the EU’s plan for coping with the current crisis, and the October 2 referendum will ask voters whether they agree with Brussels mandating the relocation of refugees without the approval of national parliaments.
London was also signalled out in the Chinese national carrier Air China’s in-flight magazine whose publisher earlier this month apologised for allegedly “racist” travel advice offered to passengers visiting the British capital.
The latest issue of Wings of China ran an article detailing safety tips to travellers based on the race and nationality of local residents.
“London is generally a safe place to travel, however, precautions are needed when entering areas mainly populated by Indians, Pakistanis and black people,” the article said in English translation below a Chinese text, according to a photograph published by CNBC.
“We advise tourists not to go out alone at night, and females always to be accompanied by another person when travelling,” it added.
The Chinese version was worded slightly differently, stating that such neighbourhoods were “comparatively more chaotic” — an adjective often used to describe dangerous areas.
The English translation prompted London MP Virendra Sharma, who emigrated from India to Britain in the 1960s, to complain to the Chinese government. — AFP