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Oct 20, 2018 - Zoltán Kovács

PM Orbán on EU summit: We defended our ground

Even though “we have successfully defended Hungary’s right to protect its own borders,” Prime Minister Orbán said, “the debate remained the same.” However, they’ve put a new idea on the table, and it’s “the best proposal” to date.

Following yesterday’s EU summit in Brussels, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán took to his Facebook page to share the latest developments in the European debate around illegal migration and border protection. 

“We have successfully defended Hungary’s right to protect its own borders” and managed to “fend off the pro-immigration proposals of Brussels bureaucrats,” PM Orbán said.

Hungary didn’t do this alone this time, he added, but together with a few other countries “who say that our borders must be protected, migration is a dangerous thing and every country should be able to decide whether or not it intends to allow anyone to enter its territory.”

In his video message, Prime Minister Orbán said that despite the favorable developments, “the debate remained the same” and a good number of member states still regard migration as a positive thing, something that’s needed in Europe.

However, it seems that Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has put a new proposal on the table. According to the initiative, instead of the prevailing idea of “mandatory responsibility,” which is the Brussels bureaucracy’s favorite euphemism for obligatory migrant resettlement quotas, the EU should adopt the principle of “mandatory solidarity.”

While the exact details of Kurz’s plan remain unclear, he suggested that member states contribute to the management of the migration situation, but that may not necessarily mean accepting mandatory quotas and taking in refugees. Instead, they could opt for other forms of solidarity, such as support for the protection of external borders.

In Prime Minister Orbán’s view “this is the best proposal” to date.