PM Orbán: ‘European Line Of Defence’ Needed If Greece Can’t Protect Borders

  • 28 Sep 2016 9:00 AM
PM Orbán: ‘European Line Of Defence’ Needed If Greece Can’t Protect Borders
If Greece is unable or unwilling to protect its own borders to stem the flow of illegal migrants into Europe, then the EU should build “a European line of defence” along Greece’s border with Macedonia and Bulgaria, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said.

If the EU fails to do so, then the line of defence will ultimately shift northward, making Hungary a frontline country again, Orbán told public television.

“But my counterparts don’t support this [proposal] because they think that if there is trouble then Hungarians will again fulfil their duties laid out in the Schengen Agreement and protect not just their own country but Austria and Germany as well.”

He noted that Hungary had implemented a migration policy focusing on self-defence. But he said Brussels was “applying double standards”, arguing that while the EU had criticised Hungary for installing a border fence to keep migrants out, Greece is never criticised or urged to act on managing the migrant inflow.

Orbán said that the problem of migration would not keep recurring in Europe if Greece fulfilled its international commitments and protected its borders. But it is either unable or unwilling to do this and has thus made Hungary a periphery Schengen country of the EU.

“We have become a line of defence against our will.” “The braver politicians in Germany and Austria” admit that what Hungary is doing also benefits their countries, he said. The prime minister also commented on German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s recent admission that she wished she could turn back time to better prepare her country for the migrant crisis.

Orbán said there were certain political decisions that could be rectified such as a bad budget or bad policy programmes. But there are some mistakes that cannot be corrected, he added. He said the one thing politicians can do after making bad decisions is to heed the advice that they should not make such mistakes again.

Applying that to the situation today, it would be a mistake to approve European legislation that would allow Brussels to resettle migrants in EU member states, he said. Orbán said western secret services and national security experts had warned policymakers just in time of the risks that uncontrolled immigration carried.

Evidence gathered by Hungarian security experts has also revealed that the people responsible for carrying out terrorist attacks in western Europe had arrived on the continent by hiding among groups of migrants that had also passed through Hungary, Orbán added.

“We could have saved a lot of European citizens if the EU had supported the border fence from the get-go.” Orbán said the migration pressure Europe is experiencing now is just the beginning of a mass migration wave.

He said the migration pressure will increase once the millions of people waiting to emigrate from the central regions of Africa set off for Europe. Regarding the proposal to set up a joint European army, the prime minister said genuine refugees and economic migrants should both be stopped outside the EU’s territory.

There it should be determined who is eligible for filing an asylum request and only those who request and gain asylum status should be allowed to enter Europe, he said.

He said such an area set up for the registration of migrants should also be protected by military forces.

Republished with permission of Hungary Matters, MTI’s daily newsletter.

MTI photot: PM's Press Office/MTVA

  • How does this content make you feel?