The only effective way to stop illegal migration is to build border fences, Péter Szijjártó, the foreign minister, told a joint press conference held with his Latvian counterpart, Edgars Rinkevic, on Monday.
He added that it was “absurd” that the European Union was still unwilling to finance the operation of Hungary’s border protection efforts.
Szijjártó said the pressure on Europe from the south, south-east and east was “unprecedented”. Now Latvia, Lithuania and Poland are confronted with the same challenges Hungary has been dealing with since 2015, he added.
Without fences, he said, no police or military force would be able to protect hundreds of kilometers of borders.
It was hard to comprehend why the European Commission was “financing everything that increases migration”, he said, rather than finding an effective means to curb it. “It’s like they’re not on this planet”, blocking support for countries that operate fences, he said.
The minister called on the EU to abandon “efforts aimed at altering the composition of Europe’s population”.
Meanwhile, on the subject of EU enlargement, Szijjártó said integration was taking place so slowly that “looking at this honestly, it’s not progressing at all”. Hungary and the bloc’s security and economic interests were not served by thwarting integration, which, he added, was the surest way to achieve stability and peace in the region.
On the subject of Covid-19, Szijjártó said Hungary’s government was helping Latvia in its actions to fight the fourth wave of the pandemic by sending 55 patient monitors and 100 units of intravenous medication equipment to the country.
Addressing defence matter, he noted that the Hungarian army has already participated twice in NATO Baltic airspace control missions, and the next ones would take place from September to December next year and in 2025.
Rinkevic, referring to Belarus, warned about migration being used as a “hybrid weapon”, calling for the EU’s external borders to be strengthened and sanctions administered.
He also praised the “friendship and alliance” between Hungary and Latvia, noting common agreement on key challenges such as migration facing the EU.
Answering a journalist’s question concerning Manfred Weber’s comment on EU support for a fence on the Polish-Belarusian border but not for Hungary’s, Szijjártó described
the head of the European People’s Party EP group’s comment as “nonsense”, and he called Weber’s attitude “Hungarophobic”.
On the topic of the Pegasus scandal, the minister insisted that
none of Hungary’s intelligence services had “eavesdropped on anyone illegally” since 2010.
The Information Office, he added, had not purchased the Israeli spyware.
Read also Brutal video shows how migrants attack the Hungarian border fence
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