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Nov 21, 2018

Hungary and Slovenia: Europe must be able to defend its external borders

Péter Szijjártó held talks with Miro Cerar where they were both in agreement that Europe should give priority to protecting its external borders and developing the related capabilities

Hungary’s foreign minister met with his Slovenian counterpart to reinforce their joint position that Europe must be able to defend its external borders.

Péter Szijjártó held talks with Miro Cerar where they were both in agreement that Europe should give priority to protecting its external borders and developing the related capabilities.

“Help must be taken to where the trouble is, with development projects carried out in the migrants’ countries of origin so as to prevent another wave of migration,” Minister Szijjártó said.

The two ministers agreed that Austria’s latest move to re-introduce control along its border with Slovenia and Hungary was unfair and unacceptable.

Minister Szijjártó said that in legal terms it is incompatible with the Schengen agreement, adding that both Hungary and Slovenia are making major efforts to protect the external borders of the European Union.

The minister noted that Hungary had spent 1 billion euros on border protection over the past three years. If the Austrians want to make sure that no migrants enter their territory, they should help Hungary and Slovenia protect the EU’s external borders, he said.

Changing subject, Minister Szijjártó touched on the many infrastructure projects facing the two countries. He said the construction of a Hungarian-Slovenian gas pipeline will be accelerated to enhance both countries’ energy security. The Slovenian section will be completed by 2023, giving Hungary access to LNG terminals in Italy.

The minister also highlighted that the power transmission line linking the two countries’ high-voltage electricity grids will be completed by 2021.

Minister Szijjártó said two new border crossing roads will be opened next year, one at Lendvadedes and another at Orfalu. What’s more, a feasibility study for developing the Redics-Lendava (Lendva) railway line has been completed and submitted to Slovenia.

The minister said cooperation between the two countries is exemplary and will become even tighter if Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia and Slovakia set up a joint division command within NATO.