Csaba Hende, the deputy speaker of parliament, is on a three-day visit to Washington, DC to discuss primarily security policy issues with American officials. Hende has met with senators and congressmen and gave a speech at the Parliamentary Intelligence-Security Forum.
First held in 2014, the forum serves as a venue for legislators to discuss security challenges such as terrorism, cybersecurity, the fight against money laundering, security risks related to foreign investments and cryptocurrencies. Representatives from 80 nations were present for the 12th Parliamentary Intelligence-Security Forum on Thursday.
Hende told MTI that his talks with Republican Senator Ron Johnson, chairman of the Subcommittee on European and Regional Security Cooperation, focused on the issue of migration. Hende said he and Johnson were in full agreement on their views on how migration should be handled, adding that the senator is expected to pay a visit to Budapest in the near future.
He said he had also held talks with Congressman Robert Pittenberg who hosted the Parliamentary Intelligence-Security Forum.
In his speech to the security forum, Hende emphasised the importance of harmonious and strong transatlantic relations for Hungary and called mutual trust “the firmest bridge between continents”.
He underscored Hungary’s commitment to NATO and the European Union, saying that Hungarians were overwhelmingly in favour of Hungary’s membership in both organisations.
The deputy speaker also underlined Hungary’s commitment to an open, free and safe internet in line with the EU’s Cybersecurity Strategy. He told the forum that the government was drafting a decree that would significantly reshape Hungary’s cybersecurity policies.
In the coming weeks, Hungary is likely to pass a new national cybersecurity strategy and the military will also set up a cybersecurity command centre, he said.
On another subject, he said combatting terrorism was a priority for Hungary and that the government also devotes special attention to the investigation and combatting of terrorist financing activities and money laundering.
The deputy speaker also attended a gala dinner organised by the In Defense of Christians human rights organisation.
Hende on Wednesday attended the state funeral of President George HW Bush.
featured photo by Szilárd Koszticsák/MTI