“We have established that it is Hungary's firm decision not to send soldiers and not to allow any arms shipments to cross the Ukrainian-Hungarian border,” Minister Gergely Gulyás said during the regular Kormányinfo event earlier today.
Based on our military experts and the information available, Gulyás added, there is a serious risk that such shipments will be destroyed after crossing the border, and this is therefore the right and justified course of action for the protection of Transcarpathia and the people living there.
“The safety of Hungarians in Transcarpathia is the most important for Hungary,” Minister Gulyás said.
In general, the government's position is that in this situation Hungary's security comes first, and Hungary has a strong interest in not getting involved, not getting dragged into the war. Humanitarian aid is important, and in recent days several civilian operations have been launched, which the Hungarian government is coordinating. The government itself is contributing to humanitarian aid, including HUF 600 million worth of food, hygiene products and childcare supplies. In only a few days since its launch, more than HUF 200 million of support has flowed in through the “Bridge for Transcarpathia” hotline.
On the refugee situation, Minister Gulyás confirmed that Hungary is providing assistance to all refugees from Ukraine, adding that the border-crossing points on the Hungarian-Ukrainian border are always open and the border-crossing is faster than on the Slovakian or Polish-Ukrainian borders.
According to yesterday's figures, about 120,000 people have crossed the Hungarian-Ukrainian border since the outbreak of the war. “Hungary's position has always been that refugees should be taken care of in the first safe country. This was our position in the 90s during the Yugoslav War when we took care of tens of thousands of refugees, and this was also our position during the migration crisis when Hungary was the fifth or sixth safe country,” Minister Gulyás said.
According to the minister heading the PM’s office, the government also briefly discussed the coronavirus situation. The Operational Group assessed the situation and the various measures in Hungary and Europe. It was concluded that the fifth wave of the epidemic is coming to an end, so Hungary will lift the vast majority of the epidemiological restrictions, including the obligation to wear a mask starting Monday. The rule allowing employers to require compulsory vaccination will also be abolished.