The arrival of up to a million migrants at Hungary’s southern border must be prevented by every means possible, ruling Fidesz-Christian Democrats MEP Tamás Deutsch said on Thursday.
Recent developments in Syria are reason for concern, including Turkey’s unilateral military action, Deutsch told MTI in Strasbourg. “But we mustn’t disregard the fact that Ankara provides an element of stability in the region,” he added.
It could prove tragic for Europe if the balance of the region is upset, he said.
“Turkey has reached the limits of its capacity to look after millions of migrants and refugees,” Deutsch said.
“When it comes to imposing sanctions on Turkey … if Ankara were unable to safely repatriate refugees and migrants to Syria, a new wave of migrants to the European Union through the Western Balkans could be triggered,” he said. “Hungary would then be the first EU member state to face the wave of migrants,” he added.
Deutsch said that “on this important issue” the EPP parliamentary group had asked for a united position, and the Hungarian members of the EPP delegation duly voted in unison with the rest of the group, he added.
“We consistently represented the Hungarian national position during discussions and the preparation of the provision’s text,” he said.
“We did not support any amendment that could have contributed to the evolution of another migrant crisis at the EU’s southern border,” he added.
While condemning Turkey’s military operations in north-east Syria, the EPP issued a recent statement also saying: “While we remain committed to the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria, we also acknowledge Turkey’s concerns regarding its Southern Borders. However, these concerns can only be addressed by genuine political dialogue. This can only be achieved through a political transition where all Syrian parties are included under the UN-led Geneva process.”