Hungarians should “send a strong message to Brussels” through the upcoming European parliamentary election that “we want change, we want a Europe which protects its borders at sea and on land”, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told public Kossuth Radio on Friday morning.
“We want to see leaders in Brussels who work to stop migration rather than make arrangements for it,” the prime minister added.
According to Orbán, there is a “liberal mafia of politicians, journalists and analysts, stacked with money and working to make the world believe that nothing can be done against migration”. But when the opposite turns out to be true, when “Hungary stops migration on land, Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini at sea or when US President Donald Trump decides to build a wall, they start hating these people”, Orbán insisted.
The upcoming election will decide “if we accept that or break out of the frame of mind that they are trying to force upon us,” Orbán said.
“Most Hungarians’ hair will stand on end when they hear European politicians say that migration is a good thing but it needs to be better organised.”
Answering a question about his withdrawing support from Manfred Weber, the spitzenkandidat of the European People’s Party in the EP election, Orbán said he would decide whom to support after the vote. “We’ll see how much support participants have received in each country,” he said, adding that the selection of Europe’s new leaders will start just two days after the election.
Regarding prenatal subsidies, the prime minister said the government has consulted Brussels on the new scheme to avoid another legal procedure against Hungary. Brussels has “refused” to green-light the plan, he said, citing a risk of illicit state funding.
“Of course, when it comes to issuing migrant cards, there is no such problem,” he said.
The root of the problem is that those “wanting to solve European demographic problems through migration” look askance on family policy and vice versa: those promoting family policies as a solution oppose migration, Orbán said.
Commenting on Hungary’s 5.3 percent GDP growth in the first quarter of 2019, Orbán said that the aim was to keep Hungarian growth permanently 2 percent higher than the European average. That would give the country a competitive edge over its EU competitors, and “our future depends on that,” he said.
Regarding his talks with US President Donald Trump on Monday, Orbán noted that Trump had come into politics from the world of business and not of academia. At the meeting, Trump was aware that 1,700 US companies are operating in Hungary, Orbán said, knew the volume of trade between the two countries and the Hungarian economic model. “But most of all, he knew about migration and the Muslim invasion towards Europe that Hungary had stemmed.”
Hungary has an interest in a US company starting extracting natural gas on the Black Sea, in Romanian waters, as soon as possible, he said. This is Hungary’s only alternative to Russian resources, he said.
Hungary also counts on the US in the upgrade of its armed forces, especially in infrastructure defence which warrants the implementation of mid-range missiles, Orbán said. The legal procedure to procure such weapons is underway, he said.
Regarding economic relations with Russia and China, Orbán called the European policies “hypocritical”. Using sanctions against Russia, western European countries have “knocked” central European countries from the Russian markets and “elbowed their way in”, he said. Western Europe also slams cooperation between central Europe and China but their trade with China “has been growing to an amazing extent,” he said.