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Sep 18, 2018 - Zoltán Kovács

PM Orbán: Nobody takes away our right to border protection

“We will not let anyone take away even a tiny bit of our right to border protection,” PM Orbán said in his address to the opening session of Parliament, adding that Hungary as a country is neither a transit zone, nor a holding camp. He also confirmed that the government will take legal steps against the EP’s decision last week to adopt the Sargentini Report.

Prime Minister Orbán didn’t mince words. Addressing the opening of the fall session of the Hungarian Parliament yesterday, the prime minister went straight to the most pressing issues facing the country.

“We will not let anyone take away even a tiny bit of our right to border protection,” he said, noting that this is the position he will take during this week’s informal EU summit in Salzburg. The prime minister’s remarks came as response to word of the latest plans coming out of Berlin that would have frontier states hand over border control authority to Brussels.

“We know more about border protection than anyone in Brussels or in any international organization,” the prime minister said, emphasizing that the main problem persists in the fact that the Brussels discourse still does not revolve around how to defend EU borders but how to set up a “reception.” They are talking about managing migration, instead of stopping it.

“They want to take away our rights to border protection so that they can enable migration,” Prime Minister Orbán said, adding that the country of Hungary is neither a transit zone, nor a holding camp.

By now it is clear, the PM continued, that the most important question of next year’s European Parliamentary elections will be migration. “Since the beginning of the migration crisis, public safety in Europe has been declining,” he said, reminding that in recent years, terror attacks committed by people from migration background have claimed 347 European lives.

Immigration and the “migrant invasion” stands above party politics, and Hungary will show solidarity with any anti-immigration, European government regardless of political composition.

On the Sargentini Report, the PM said that “the document was written against Hungary, not against the Hungarian government,” adding that with the leadership of Gergely Gulyás, the minister heading the Prime Minister’s Office, the government will take the necessary legal steps to challenge it. 

Towards the end of his address, shifting the focus to the state of the Hungarian economy, Prime Minister Orbán said that the basic tenet of the Hungarian economic model is “if there is work, there is everything.” Today, there is work. Since 2010, 800 thousand more Hungarians are working, the unemployment rate stands at a record low of 3.6 percent, and wages have been on the rise for 65 consecutive months.