Hungarian foreign minister responds to Swedish counterpart’s remarks over new asylum rules
Budapest, March 9 (MTI) – The Hungarian government gives priority to the security of the Hungarian people over allowing illegal migrants coming from a safe third country to enter Hungary and move around uncontrolled in the country, the foreign minister said on Thursday, in response to the Swedish foreign minister’s remarks in a local daily.
Péter Szijjártó responded to Margot Wallstrom voicing concern in Goteborgs-Posten’s Thursday edition over the “consequences” of the package of amendments Hungary’s parliament passed on Tuesday to tighten asylum regulations.
Wallstrom said that international rights groups including Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International were rightly concerned that the measures could prove to be not only unlawful but, in the first place, “inhumane”. The Swedish minister insisted that the issue should be put on the agenda of the European Union.
Wallstrom also noted a meeting of foreign ministers where it became apparent that Hungary was one of the countries that had “purchased quantities of barbed wire” whereas Sweden had purchased blankets which she said illustrated well the difference in approach.
Szijjártó told MTI that the Swedish foreign minister was indeed right in stating a difference in the two countries’ approach.
He argued that while Sweden had been aiding illegal immigrants, it had recently failed to help an injured Hungarian girl to stay in Sweden with her only relatives, even despite funding offered in the contribution by the Hungarian government.
“This is a hypocritical approach which the Hungarian government cannot and does not want to subscribe to,” Szijjártó said.
It is up to the Swedish government to decide whom it considers important, and this is what the Hungarian government does, too, Szijjártó said.