A phone box displays a billboards showing Hungarian-American financier George Soros and EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker above the caption "You have a right to know what Brussels is preparing to do!," on Vaci Avenue in Budapest, Hungary,...
A phone box displays a billboards showing Hungarian-American financier George Soros and EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker above the caption "You have a right to know what Brussels is preparing to do!," on Vaci Avenue in Budapest, Hungary,...

The European Commission on Tuesday rebuked a media campaign by the Hungarian government aimed at European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and U.S. businessman George Soros, accusing Brussels of pushing migration plans threatening Hungary.

Orban's latest campaign, announced in a Facebook post on Monday, depicts smiling images of Soros and Juncker with the text "You also have the right to know what Brussels prepares for!" overlaid in red and white block capitals.

A caption says the EU plans to adopt mandatory relocation quotas for immigrants, weaken the border protection rights of member states and make arrivals easier with a "migrant visa".

The EU Commission, which is locked in a series of running battles with Orban including over reforms criminalizing support for migrants, dismissed the latest Hungarian campaign as "fake news and disinformation".

"The Hungarian government campaign beggars belief," Commission spokesman Margaritis Schinas told a press briefing.

"It is shocking that such a ludicrous conspiracy theory has reached the mainstream to the extent it has.

"It is not true that the EU ... undermines national border protection, quite the contrary. And there are zero plans for the so-called humanitarian visas. Member states decide to what level they want to accept legal migration," Schinas said.

Hungarian-born billionaire Soros, who promotes liberal causes through his charities, has been the subject of a campaign by the right-wing government of Prime Minister Viktor Orban.

Soros' charitable Open Society Foundations left Hungary last year, while Central European University, a top graduate school based in Budapest, has said it was being forced out of Hungary and would move its main programs to Vienna.

Hungary was the first country in Europe to take a hard anti-immigration line in 2015, when more than a million immigrants arrived, about half of them transiting Hungary en route to Western Europe.

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban addresses th
FILE - Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban addresses the media during a press conference in the Cabinet Office of the Prime Minister in Budapest, Hungary, Jan. 10, 2019.

Orban's stance against immigration has bolstered support for his ruling Fidesz party, which is well ahead of its opposition rivals according to the latest opinion polls in the run-up to a May European Parliament election.

Orban has said he hoped anti-immigration parties will gain a majority in the European Parliament elections, which he said could lead to similar changes in the EU executive.