Budapest, September 10 (MTI) – The interior ministry has proposed that the government declare a state of crisis in light of the massive influx of migrants, which will be discussed at next Tuesday’s cabinet meeting, government office chief Janos Lazar said.
He said in the next two weeks the government will expand the capacities of reception centres and Prime Minister Viktor Orban has ordered the interior minister to make recommendations for at least two or three more centres to be set up in the country.
So far 176,000 illegal entrants have arrived in Hungary this year, Lazar said. Findings by the national security cabinet indicate that organised crime and the threat of terrorism are on the rise in Hungary, he added.
“As of zero hours on Sept 15. it will be declared that anyone choosing Hungary as their target destination must obey the laws and enter at official entry points,” Lazar said, adding that there will be opportunities for filing asylum requests at the border and anyone doing so can receive legal protection and provisions until their request is processed — within 12-14 days.
Lazar said contrary to earlier plans there would be no tranzit zones open towards Serbia, as “this would make no sense”. There will be two types of people at the border: those who file asylum requests and those who don’t. The first group will be transported to reception centres but they will have freedom to move within the country. The others will stay on the border or in Serbia. Support for this latter group will be the shared responsibility of Serbia and Hungary, and civil organisations like the Hungarian Maltese Charity, the Hungarian Ecumenical Aid and the Hungarian Red Cross, will be asked to help, he said.
Lazar said the fence on the border with Serbia is being constructed at an accelerated pace and its completion date could be as soon as a month before the original deadline of Oct. 31. In the recent period some 10 kilometres of fencing has been built per day, he said.
In response to a question, Lazar said that the deadline for completing construction on the border fence at the Roszke border station, including the railroad tracks, is Sept. 15.
By the end of September the government expects it would have authority to give extra tasks to the army in connection with handling mass migration.
He rejected criticism that the Hungarian government was not providing support to migrants. He said rather than taking supplies to them, the government is transporting migrants to assistance points.
Lazar said Austrian Chancellor Werner Faymann’s remarks about the Hungarian government and Orban were “outrageous” but Orban was ready to sit down to talks with the chancellor.
He said international criticism about Hungary’s migration policies was merely an attempt to force Hungary into accepting the quota system and into building a big refugee camp on its territory.
Hungary does not rule out a reasonable discussion on the quota plan, but there must first be agreement on basic issues. One of these is that priority should be given to protecting Europe’s borders.
Hungary does however “fully reject” a plan to set up so-called hot spots, or refugee camps controlled by the European Commission, on Hungary’s territory. There is neither “a chance nor an opportunity” for building such a camp, which would accommodate up to 100,000 people, he said.