“Only the Hungarians can decide who they want to live with, not Brussels”, Head of the Cabinet Office of the Prime Minister Antal Rogán said at a press conference held during the recess of Tuesday’s Cabinet meeting after President of the Republic János Áder set the date for the Government-initiated national referendum on the mandatory relocation quotas for 2 October.
“On 2 October the citizens of Hungary will be the first in Europe to have the opportunity to voice their opinion on Brussels’ immigration policy, and can send a clear message as whether they support or rejects Brussels’ immigration policy”, Mr. Rogán said.
“The Government is asking the people of Hungary to say no to mandatory relocation and to Brussels’ immigration policy”, he added, while also asking Hungarians to participate in the referendum in as large numbers as possible. The Minster continued by saying that with regard to immigration policy, the Cabinet continues to regard the protection of borders and stopping the flow of immigrants entering Europe as the most important priorities.
In reply to a question on the referendum campaign, Mr. Rogán said the Government would start launching a series of informative adverts, which is already partly underway and would continue throughout July and August. Following 20 August (St. Stephen’s Day, a major national holiday), however “in addition to increasing public awareness we would like to put forward the standpoint of the Hungarian Government to a much wider audience and in a much clearer fashion”, he indicated, noting that in addition to Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, every Minister and Minister of State would be taking part in the campaign. He also asked that every Parliamentary party voice its opinion on the subject. Mr. Rogán also informed reporters about the reinforcement of Hungary’s southern border and the increasing number of people smugglers.
“Hungarian border protection has been strengthened since Tuesday; the number of police officers and military personal taking part in border protection along the Csongrád and Bács-Kiskun county stretches of the border will to all intents and purposes be doubled. This means that a contingent of 6-10 thousand will be continuously on duty to protect the border in Csongrád and Bács-Kiskun counties”, he explained.
Mr. Rogán also told reporters that the number of people smugglers had increased markedly. “755 people attempted to cross the Hungarian border illegally on Monday night. 633 illegal border crossing attempts were successfully prevented by police and military personnel. 122 people succeeded in crossing the border but were all apprehended within the eight kilometre zone and escorted back to the other side of the fence to the transit zone”, he said.
“The increase in activity on the part of people traffickers was also indicated by the appearance of drones above the Serbian stretch of the border; this is how traffickers are attempting to determine the position of Hungarian border protection forces”, he added, promising to also inform the Serbian authorities about this fact.
It is however not enough to simply strengthen the protection of the border, because the activities of people smugglers and the flow of migrants into Europe “are still being encouraged by Brussels’ lenient immigration policy”, the Minister said, according to whom the citizens of Hungary should for this reason say a resounding no to Brussels’ immigration policy on 2 October.
Photo: Gergely Botár/kormany.hu