PM Orbán holds talks with President Erdogan to strengthen Hungarian-Turkish relations
“A stable Turkish government and a stable Turkey are a precondition for Hungary not to be endangered in any way due to overland migration,” PM Orbán said
Prime Minister Viktor Orbán held talks with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey in Budapest yesterday, where the prime minister said Hungarian security and Turkish stability are directly linked.
“A stable Turkish government and a stable Turkey are a precondition for Hungary not to be endangered in any way due to overland migration,” PM Orbán said at a joint press conference after the talks.
PM Orbán said it is in Hungary’s interest that Turkey should remain strong and able to maintain peace in its region and control illegal migration to Europe.
The prime minister expressed appreciation to Turkey for accommodating several million refugees that arrived via neighboring countries and thanked Erdogan for “fully meeting” Turkey’s agreement with the European Union, which he said was another precondition for European security.
PM Orbán also confirmed that Hungary and Turkey would raise the level of military cooperation and build “powerful ties” in the military industry. He added that in recent decades “there have been no money or energy left to develop the military” but “we will make up for that now; Hungary’s goal is to build a modern and effective national army”.
The prime minister also touched on business cooperation between the two countries and said that the mutual goal of increasing the turnover of bilateral trade to 5 billion USD has not yet been reached. He noted, however, a 19 percentage point increase in the first half of this year, and said that meeting the original goal “does not seem unrealistic”.
On the topic of Turkey’s EU accession, PM Orbán said that Hungary had always supported Turkey and would continue to do so. If Europe does indeed decide to become a major global political player, then it must find the right form of cooperation with Turkey, he added. The prime minister said Hungary wants a strong Europe, and for this a strategic agreement with Turkey is needed.