The budget of the Hungarian Armed Forces has been raised by 30 percent to a record-breaking 778 billion forints (EUR 2.2bn) in 2021, a State Secretary of the Defence Ministry said on Wednesday.
The military has played an essential role in maintaining the country’s security in recent years, Szilárd Németh told a press conference. Next year’s budget ensures the resources for that work, he added.
Soldiers and police will continue to protect the borders, Németh said. The activity of people smugglers has picked up, and authorities apprehended 170 migrants on Tuesday evening alone, he said.
The European Union’s Schengen borders are under great pressure from migrants, Németh said. He insisted that the “organisations of [American financier George] Soros continue to make a fuss about migrants,” and he added that “pro-migration activity has strengthened in Brussels”.
Németh: Govt to Do its Utmost to Keep Transit Zones
Regarding protection efforts against the novel coronavirus epidemic, Németh noted that the military is securing transit corridors for traffic across the country. Hospital commanders are present in 51 hospitals in 13 counties to aid the flow of information, to oversee the management of stocks and to provide security, he noted.
The armed forces have also set up a volunteer reserve scheme for people who have lost their job during the epidemic. In the first round of training that started on July 1, 500 people enrolled in the programme, he said.
Meanwhile, Németh noted what he called the opposition’s “tradition of voting against the security of Hungary”. Left-wing governments between 2002 and 2010 “systematically dismantled the Hungarian Armed Forces”, and they voted against the 2021 budget, too, he said.
Featured photo illustration by Szilárd Koszticsák/MTI.