Politics

Hungarian Security Chief Rules Out Building New Border Fence – At Least For Now

Hungary would only begin extending the fence on its border with Serbia or build a new one along another section of its border if the flow of illegal migrants were to shift to the Romanian or the Ukrainian border sections, the Hungarian Prime Minister’s internal security advisor said.

Hungary’s anti-immigration border fence at the Serbia border was built in the summer of 2015 (photo: Zoltán Gergely Kelemen – MTI)

But for now there is no indication that this would be the case, György Bakondi told public news channel M1, adding that controls along Hungary’s borders with Romania and Ukraine were effective thanks to cooperation with those countries’ border authorities. Bakondi added:

We didn’t build the border fence out of joy but rather in the interest of keeping Hungary’s population safe

He said that although migration pressure on Europe has been down compared with the levels it reached two years ago, the Balkan route is under constant pressure. Currently some 80,000 migrants are estimated to be residing somewhere along that route and they are constantly being joined by migrant groups that had been stranded on the Greek islands, he added.

Thousands of migrants attempt to cross the Hungarian border as well, he noted. If it were not for the border fence, they would pass through the country to head on to western Europe, Bakondi said.

The PM’s advisor said Hungary would like to see the European Union demonstrate greater solidarity regarding its situation, arguing that while the fences built by Bulgaria, Spain, Greece and France had been deemed “good fences” by EU leaders, Hungary’s has received criticism.

via hungarymatters.hu and MTI; featured photo: Szilárd Koszticsák – MTI