Budapest, September 3 (MTI) – The Hungarian government has asked German diplomats to inform migrants at Budapest’s Keleti railway station about Germany’s official position on asylum, government office chief Janos Lazar said.
Speaking at a press conference, Lazar said the chaotic situation at the railway station is a consequence of Germany’s mixed messages and “invitation” of Syrian refugees “to well-laid tables”. He said the German government had made numerous communication errors, which has resulted in migrants “growing more and more impatient and aggressive” since Sunday.
He said it is not enough for the German embassy to publish something on its website. If its diplomats cannot go to the station to inform the migrants then the migrants themselves should go to the embassy and try to apply for a visa.
Lazar said police would make all necessary checks related to the Schengen regulations on trains heading toward Hungary’s western border, adding that police are not tasked to commit violence but to protect the country. The government office chief noted that earlier on Thursday railway company MAV suspended the operation of all international train services from Budapest to western Europe until further notice in order to ensure safety of railway services. Lazar said Europe is experiencing its most severe migration crisis since the wars in Yugoslavia in the 1990s.
The government office chief said Hungary is committed to the stance that Europe cannot give up on protecting its borders. He said that about “five to six countries are shouldering the burden of border protection”. Hungary respects the fact that certain countries wish to take in refugees due to labour shortage or a “demography crisis”, but Hungary has no need for refugees.
Lazar said that if the Hungarian government were to give up on keeping to the Schengen rules, it would automatically “result in Hungary getting out of the Schengen zone”. He noted that Austria conducted checks on its border on Monday and Tuesday, which “is nothing compared to Vienna reinstating Schengen border controls”.
There is a stark difference in the positions of old and new EU members on the migration situation, Lazar said.
He added that leaders of the Visegrad Four countries (Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia) will meet for an extraordinary meeting on Friday afternoon in Prague to coordinate their actions.
Lazar said Hungary is subject to “undue, unjust and harmful discrimination”, and rejected western European statements criticising Hungary for its border control measures.
The German embassy told MTI it would not comment on Lazar’s remarks “at this time”. The following message is posted on the German embassy’s website in Hungarian and English: “The Dublin Convention is applicable European legislation. This means that applicants for asylum are required to register themselves in the country through which they entered the EU border. The asylum procedure is principally to be performed in that country”.