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Mar 04, 2019

PM Orbán: The European Commission should be stripped of migration as a policy area

The prime minister said a new professional body under the authority of Schengen-zone interior ministers should take over the responsibility of migration

During an interview with Welt am Sonntag, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán touched on Hungarian-German relations and said the blot on the countries’ otherwise “excellent” partnership was due to differences in their respective approaches to migration.

“We insist on the right of nations to defend themselves, whereas Germany has a different philosophy,” the prime minister said.

PM Orbán added that the European Commission should be stripped of migration as a policy area. Instead, a new professional body under the authority of Schengen-zone interior ministers should take over that responsibility, he added.

The prime minister also said the EPP’s northern members were closer to French President Emmanuel Macron than to the German Christian Democratic Union. “Sadly, [the issue of] migration has sharpened differences here, too,” he said. PM Orbán insisted that the EPP, if it wanted to win in central Europe, must declare that “Juncker is the past” and Manfred Weber, the EPP’s spitzenkandidat, “the future”.

PM Orbán also dismissed the suggestion that the government’s recent poster campaign highlighted flaws in the European Union was anti-Semitic, saying: “This seems like a German problem”.

The prime minister also revealed that a new phase of the government’s billboard campaign would concentrate on First Vice-President of the European Commission, Frans Timmermans, who is also the spitzenkandidat of the European Socialists.

PM Orbán insisted that the attack against government’s billboard campaign had been launched by the Europe’s left wing. “The left wing always chooses someone as a target,” Orbán said, adding that its aim was to weaken the European People’s Party, of which Fidesz is a member, with a view to assuming power in Europe, which he characterized as a “power struggle” rather than an ideological one.