Hungary Prime Minister Viktor Orban condemned an MEP from his Fidesz party on Wednesday who quit after attending an alleged "gay orgy", with critics accusing the socially conservative ruling party of hypocrisy.
Orban described the actions of MEP Jozsef Szajer as "unacceptable and indefensible" and said they had "no place in the values of our political family", according to a statement from his office.
Szajer, a proponent of anti-LGBT measures, admitted on Tuesday he had taken part in a "private party" in Belgium and apologised for breaking coronavirus restrictions.
"While Fidesz politicians are teaching us about Christianity, family, traditional gender roles and morality, they are actually living a completely different life, as far away as possible from the values they voice," leader of the DK opposition party Ferenc Gyurcsany said.
According to Belgian media, the gathering Szajer went to was a sex party attended by 25 naked men.
"Suddenly my whole living room was full of cops," the organiser of the party told the Het Laatste Nieuws newspaper.
"They immediately started shouting: 'Identity card! Now!' But we weren't even wearing pants, how in God's name could we quickly conjure up our identity card?"
- LGBT misery in Hungary -
Belgian prosecutors say Szajer was spotted fleeing the gathering along a gutter and that narcotics were found in his backpack.
The revelations are particularly embarrassing for the 59-year-old lawyer as he played a key role in pushing Fidesz's conservative agenda, helping to rewrite the constitution that contains a clause defining marriage as being "a union of one man and one woman".
"While he was enjoying himself in LGBT-friendly Brussels, he made life for LGBT people in Hungary miserable," tweeted Szabolcs Panyi, a journalist for the Direkt36 investigative site.
Szajer's fall from grace comes shortly after Orban lost two other key players in his Europe policy, MEP Gyorgy Schopflin and adviser Peter Gottfried.
"These people will be missing from very important meetings and won't be able to convey information back home," says Zoltan Lakner, analyst and owner of the independent Jelen weekly.
Hungary is already fighting fires in Brussels after it joined Poland to veto the EU's budget and coronavirus rescue plan because of proposals to link funds to the rule of law.
At the same time, another Fidesz MEP is ruffling feathers in the party's European Parliament grouping, the European People's Party (EPP).
Tamas Deutsch caused uproar by comparing EPP parliamentary leader Manfred Weber, who is German, with the Gestapo.
Some 30 MEPs from the bloc have demanded Deutsch be excluded from the grouping.
EPP President Donald Tusk suggested on Wednesday that Fidesz should be cast out of the grouping, tweeting: "What else should Fidesz do for all of you to see that they simply don’t fit in with our family?"