Weekly newsletter

Hungarian Cabinet Chief Rebuffs “Unfair” International Criticism Over Amended Border Regulations

Tamás Székely 2016.07.08.

Hungary refuses to enter into any compromise that would hamper the country’s security, government office chief János Lázár said at his weekly news conference. Hungary will not allow anyone to cross its border unchecked, Lázár said, insisting that the country must protect its right to decide who it wants to allow in.

This is why it was necessary to amend the country’s border regulations, Lázár said, referring to new rules that entered into force on Tuesday. He said it was unfair of European politicians and international organisations to call into question Hungary’s solidarity and criticise its laws. “What could be a greater show of solidarity than Hungary protecting Europe’s borders—largely with its own funds—and stopping people who try to enter unchecked without documents?”

In response to a question about plans for a new reception centre in Kiskunhalas, in southern Hungary, Lázár said the government had not yet come to a decision, but all plans would be discussed with the town’s leaders. He said recent government measures, such as the 8km “deep border control” and the transfer of migrants to a transit zone, would reduce migration pressure on Hungary and there would not be any need for a new reception centre. “The government is on the side of closing it down,” he said.

Meanwhile, asked to comment on the possibility of a Hunxit after Brexit, János Lázár said he could only underline his personal view that he could not “wholeheartedly” support Hungary remaining in the EU. He said he was pessimistic about the possibility of renewing the current EU institutional system and he said Europe should not be confused with the European Commission or the European Union.

What was happening in those institutions did not serve the interests of Europe, and it is the fault of the commission that one of the most important member states is now leaving, he added. “The way the commission and the EU operates today does not appeal to ordinary people”, he said, adding that this was not the Hungarian government’s official position but his personal one as a Fidesz politician.

via hungarymatters.hu and MTI photo: Noémi Bruzák – MTI