In Brussels, before the summit of EU Heads of State and Government, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said that in principle Hungary is ready to support the establishment of a permanent EU border protection force. The details must be discussed, but the Government of Hungary agrees with the direction of the initiative, he added.

Mr. Orbán said that the European Commission’s proposal to restructure Frontex – the EU’s border protection agency –  is obviously related to Greece. He said that “we accept that if a country is unable to do so (protect its borders), supplementary measures should be available”, but border protection is “primarily a national competency and we will not hand it over to anyone; this is the responsibility of the Hungarian state, protecting the external borders is the responsibility of the Government of Hungary”, he stressed.

On Tuesday the European Commission submitted its proposal on the establishment of a permanent European Border and Coast Guard. This would have the competency to take over the protection of the EU’s external borders, even if the government of a Member State objected.

The Chancellor of Austria has repeatedly blackmailed Hungary

The Prime Minister also talked about the suggestion, made by Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann, to cut EU funding to countries which refuse to participate in the distribution of migrants among the Member States. Mr. Orbán addressed a message to “leftist prime ministers” suggesting this idea that “they should not be using blackmail, as that is not a European attitude – it is anti-European behaviour.”

He added that Mr. Faymann “has repeatedly blackmailed Hungary, and is blackmailing everyone who continues to stand up for freedom of opinion and speech. This is not a European attitude; we will not be able to come to an agreement on these grounds”.

Mr. Orbán said that prime ministers of the Visegrád countries will hold talks before the EU summit, and British Prime Minister David Cameron will also attend it. On Friday Mr. Orbán will hold a bilateral meeting with Mr. Cameron.

{Source: Government of Hungary}

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[photo credits: By Mstyslav Chernov (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons]

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