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Hungary And Portugal Expand Consular Cooperation As Foreign Ministers Hold NATO Meeting In Brussels

Tamás Székely 2016.12.07.

Hungary and Portugal have agreed to expand consular cooperation with a view to facilitating visa issuance, Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said after talks with his Portuguese counterpart.

Under the agreement, Portugal will be entitled to issue Hungarian visas in a number of Portuguese-speaking African countries while Hungary will serve Portuguese visa issuance in Far Eastern countries in which Portugal does not have consular representation, Szijjártó told MTI on the sidelines of a meeting of NATO foreign ministers. The agreement will allow both countries to expand their visa-issuing presence without any extra costs, he said. Szijjártó said he and Augusto Santos Silva (pictured above) also agreed to deepen their cooperation in their push for NATO and EU enlargement in the western Balkans. Hungary and Portugal both agree that “this is the only way to uphold peace and stability”, he added.

Commention on the two-day meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Brussles, Szijjártó said the pressure of migration continued to pose a security risk for the EU and Europe as a whole, so Hungary proposes that NATO, in its capacity as a military alliance, should participate in overcoming the migrant crisis. Hungary will propose significant NATO involvement in two areas, Szijjártó said. On one hand, NATO should directly participate in training Iraqi security forces in order to enable them to maintain peace after Mosul is retaken and the international forces leave. On the other hand, NATO’s naval forces should boost efforts to stop the migrant wave on the Aegean and the Mediterranean seas, the Hungarian Foreign Minister said.

Hungary agrees with US President-elect Donald Trump’s plans to give an increased role to NATO in the fight against terrorism. Some member states have expressed an opposing view, but Hungary will maintain its proposal, Szijjártó said. Strengthening NATO’s “European leg” is more important than ever before, the minister said. Europe cannot expect America to protect it every time there’s need for protection. Hungary supports all proposals to coordinate NATO and EU strategies in order to prevent parallel efforts, Szijjártó added.

via hungarymatters.hu and MTI