The Hungarian government will not yield to any blackmail because it knows precisely that there are political motivations behind them, Zoltán Kovács, the state secretary for international communication and relations, told Hungarian public media after a V4 ministerial meeting in Budapest on Friday.
Kovács was asked to respond to suggestions that “foreign journalists provide distorted reports about Hungary, Brussels is applying double standards [against certain EU member states] and punishes countries that do not behave the way expected from them”.
Kovács blamed “the shocking operational principles of a [global] network”, an international federation comprising thousands of newspapers, news services and media outlets.”
They include prestigious news outlets, such as Financial Times, Le Monde, New York Times and Die Welt, that have been considered as influential over the past several decades, he said, adding that now
“out of mere political interests, these channels started to broadcast subjective reports with distorted facts to the public” about Hungary.
“And when this practice keeps going on for years, it obviously has an impact on the general image of the country concerned. This is why we should not be surprised to see the political decisions taken in the EU,” Kovács said, making reference to recent resolutions affecting Hungary and Poland.
The state secretary did not rule out that foreign interference in Hungary’s upcoming general election would not take the form of “spectacular events”, but continuously applied discrediting methods and instruments.
“It became clear over the past years that one of those methods was to threaten [Hungary and Poland] with withholding the payment of EU funds while everybody knew that neither of these two countries had either individual or systemic problems with the state of the rule of law”.
“But we are not going to succumb to any blackmail because we know precisely that they are politically motivated”, with global networks and influential people standing behind it who have “a fundamentally different political agenda and malicious intents against Hungary which they demonstrated many times over the past years and decades”, Kovács said.