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Foreign Minister: One Top EU Position For Central Europeans

MTI-Hungary Today 2019.06.24.

The government does not support either Manfred Weber or Frans Timmermans, the lead candidates of the European People’s Party (EPP) and the European Socialists, to fill top EU positions because these two politicians do not meet the expectations of the Hungarian people, the foreign minister told public Kossuth radio on Sunday.

Hungary will only support candidates who have respect toward European nations, take up the cause of protecting Christian culture and stand for stopping migration rather than supporting it, Péter Szijjártó told a morning programme.

Central Europe has become Europe’s engine of growth with its national economies growing at a rate twice higher than that of the bloc’s average, he said.

“And behind the economic and security policy decisions of these countries there is rationale,” Szijjártó said.

Orbán: Weber, Timmermans ‘Have Failed’

All this gives Hungary a mandate to support the position that out of the top four EU positions, one at least should be filled by a leading politician representing central Europe, he added.

Hungary already called into question the spitzenkandidat system when it was introduced, Szijjártó said, adding that “now many in the EU are of the opinion that it should be scrapped altogether”.

“The Visegrad Four [the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia] have found several allies on the matter,” the minister said, calling the grouping “the strongest and most effective cooperation within the EU”.

Central Europe: Growing Political Weight?

In connection with Hungary’s recent veto of the European Union climate protection targets, Szijjártó said their implementation would pose serious risks and carry considerable costs to Europe’s economy.

Hungary does not support the climate goals also because it would result in a 30-40 percent increase in domestic household utility bills, he said.

Featured photo illustration by Tamás Kovács/MTI