Hungarian Justice Minister Judit Varga was awarded Poland’s Custos Virtutum Guardian of Value International Prize at a gala event held partly online on Sunday.
Varga was awarded the prize of the Waclaw Felczak Institute of Polish-Hungarian Cooperation for her support of Central European values.
At the event, the minister was lauded for having become a key figure when it comes to issues affecting the Visegrad Group like the rule of law, as well as legislation concerning parental and children’s rights.
In her acceptance speech, Varga said she viewed the award as recognition of Hungary and Poland’s shared belief in a diverse and strong Europe based on sovereign nations where societies are built on family, Christianity and conservative values.
The minister praised Polish historian Waclaw Felczak for his “brave and exemplary” answers to the challenges of the 20th century, saying he was a role model for Hungarians.
The prize was accepted on Varga’s behalf by Hungary’s ambassador to Poland Orsolya Zsuzsanna Kovács.
The gala event was also attended by Piotr Glinski, Poland’s deputy prime minister and minister of culture.
In an interview with Polish weekly DoRzeczy, a patron of the Custos Virtutum prize, Varga said the European Union’s plan to make the receipt of EU funding contingent on upholding the rule of law was a “well-established political weapon that can be used against any country at any time”. Debates on media diversity or the efficiency or level of freedom of legal institutions can be had at any time, the minister said. “But if these debates are blown up by the global liberal media or non-governmental organisations with opaque funding sources, then the average media consumer could come to think that the real problems are not terrorism, illegal migration or getting the economy back on its feet, but rather the diversity of the Hungarian and Polish media,” she said.
featured image illustration via Balázs Mohai/MTI