Brussels, March 8 (MTI) – Leaders of the European Union have agreed to close off people smuggling routes in the Western Balkans, which means “restoring order on the borders”, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told journalists following an extraordinary EU-Turkey summit in Brussels in the early hours of Tuesday.

The agreement was adopted as a result of joint efforts by Hungary, Austria, Slovenia and Croatia, Orbán said. He added that the accord will help eliminate a “people smuggling business model” and conclude an era. “Even if smugglers make a deal with migrants they will not be able to deliver because we will not allow migrants to cross the Balkans,” Orbán insisted.

He went on to say that it will result in a “difficult situation” for Greece, because many migrants will be stuck in that country. The EU have agreed to help Greece manage that increased burden, he added.

At the summit, no agreement was reached with representatives of Turkey, who presented a proposal concerning four “very difficult” issues, Orbán said. Those topics were deemed too complex to pass decision in such a short time, and will be subject to further talks between the EU and Turkey, he added.

Orbán also voiced Hungary’s position against possible transfers of migrants from Turkey to Europe, and noted that Hungary and Slovakia have filed a suit against the EU over an earlier European decision concerning the relocation of migrants.

Hungary disagrees with “any accepted methodology” of the EU’s mandatory quota system, and has supported a Polish proposal aimed at eliminating the possibility of any increase in those quota figures under an agreement with Turkey, Orbán said.

Photo: MTI


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