Politics

Hungarian Premier Explains To Jewish Federation Chief Why He Insists On Billboard Campaign Targeting George Soros

Hungary will take action against anyone promoting illegal migration irrespective of their “origin, religious affiliation or financial status”, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in a response letter to András Heisler, the head of Hungarian Jewish federation Mazsihisz.

In his letter, sent to news agency MTI by the Prime Minister’s press office on Friday, Viktor Orbán referred to a recent call by Mazsihisz that the Hungarian government should drop a billboard campaign depicting US financier George Soros, and said that Soros was working to use “his wealth, power, influence and the network of NGOs he finances to settle migrants in the European Union by the millions”.

The government will use “the Hungarian state’s political and legal force” against anyone trying to compromise the country’s security through promoting illegal migration, Orbán said. He insisted that “the vast majority of Hungarians unanimously agreed that the future of Hungary and the EU depends on the response that will be given to the problem of illegal migration” and added that “the frequent terrorist acts and violence especially impact the European Jewish community”. “As prime minister, it is my duty to protect Hungary and its citizens,” Orbán wrote in his repsonse letter, adding that Hungary’s Jewish community could always rely on the government’s protection.

On Friday morning, the Hungarian Prime Minister gave an interview to public radio and said that Brussels was implementing the immigration plan of George Soros and it is right that ordinary Hungarians should be informed about that. Speaking in connection with the current government’s billboard campaign depicting the US financier, Orbán accused Soros of planning to import one million migrants to Europe. Other plans include stripping European Union member states of their right to decide on immigration policy, he insisted. He said everyone knew that Hungary was right about the issue of migration and every prime minister had admitted as such in private. It is not the people of Europe who decided on such matters but ideologues with financial interests who were bound by liberalism, he said.

Viktor Orbán said people on the way to Europe must be stopped in Libya, while anyone who is in Europe illegally must be transported away from the continent rather than distributed among EU countries. If Europe speaks of distributing migrants, then this will be interpreted in Africa as an invitation, he added. Orbán said it had been a mistake to kill Muammar Gaddafi, Libya’s one-time leader, because there was no exodus of Africans to Europe thanks to an agreement between Libya and Italy while he was alive. Commenting on a remark by Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the European Commission, who drew a parallel between today’s situation and the wave of Hungarian refugees in 1956, Orbán said that any western leader in 1956 who would have declared that Hungarians do not belong here culturally would have failed. Orbán insisted:

Hungary is a Christian country and belongs to Europe

On the topic of the recent summit in Warsaw, Orbán said it was important that US President Donald Trump had chosen central Europe as the venue of his first serious speech outlining a programme. The standpoint on migration that borders must be protected is shared by the US and central Europe, he said. Commenting on remarks by Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern concerning purported divisions between members of the Visegrad Group, Orbán said he understood that it must “hurt the Austrians” that they are not members of the V4 or of any other regional grouping. “Whereas Austria is a talented state, given its high standard of living, in the area of foreign policymaking it hasn’t a clue,” he said. Orbán welcomed the effect on competition deliveries of liquefied natural gas (LNG) from the United States would have on Europe’s energy market.

Commenting on US President Donald Trump’s pitch of American LNG as an alternative energy source to leaders from the region in Warsaw on Thursday, Orbán acknowledged the rivalry such LNG deliveries would create with gas supplied from Russia. “Both [sources of energy] are available to us. We’re buyers … So let those who can sell gas in Europe compete for our money. We’ll buy the cheapest,” Orbán said. He said Hungary’s energy dependence had been “radically reduced” in the recent period with the lifespan expansion and upgrade of the Paks nuclear power plant as well as the construction of international gas interconnectors.

via hungarymatters.hu and MTI; featured photo: Balázs Mohai – MTI