In response to Index, the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP) denied pro-Fidesz Magyar Nemzet’s allegations that claimed that George Soros had tried to hinder Olivér Várhelyi’s appointment for the leadership of the newly-formed European Comission’s neigborhood and enlargement portfolio.
According to the daily, which referred to “reliable homeland security information,” Soros called the leader of DGAP (which is also backed by the Open Society Foundations (OSF)), Daniela Schwarzer, and wanted her to ask German Chancellor Angela Merkel prevent the Hungarian candidate’s nomination.
According to Soros, Magyar Nemzet claimed, it would undermine the EU’s credibility if the Hungarian government would delegate someone to the post, as Viktor Orbán was “too close to Russia and Turkey.” Magyar Nemzet claimed that Schwarzer had responded to Soros that “things don’t work that way.” She allegedly said that although she could talk to Merkel, she wouldn’t give her such advice, so she rebuffed Soros’ request.
To this date, however, the pro-Fidesz daily hasn’t provided any evidence or revealed its “reliable” source about this conversation.
In recent weeks, many leading Fidesz politicians accused Soros of having tried to intervene and hinder Várhelyi’s appointment.
Meanwhile, DGAP’s press department told Index that “George Soros did not ask Daniela Schwarzer to talk to Angela Merkel about Olivér Várhelyi,” adding that “as it can be seen in our Annual Report of 2018/2019, one of the many sponsors of DGAP is indeed the OSF. But we wouldn’t like to comment any further on the false reporting of Magyar Nemzet.”
featured image: illustration; via MTI/CEU/Dániel Végel