Hungary respects all international norms, says Trocsanyi after meeting Jagland
Strasbourg, September 28 (MTI) – Hungary respects and will continue to respect all international norms, Justice Minister Laszlo Trocsanyi said after talks with Secretary-General of the Council of Europe (CoE) Thorbjorn Jagland on Monday.
Trocsanyi visited Strasbourg to present to Jagland recently introduced Hungarian laws and their implementation in connection with the migration crisis. Jagland had earlier contacted Prime Minister Viktor Orban and asked for his consent to a CoE review of the Hungarian legal regulations introduced on September 15.
Hungary will remain open to consultations with international organisations, Trocsanyi told a press conference.
He said some quarter of a million migrants had passed through Hungary this year and 170,000 applied for asylum. Hungary considers it a priority to act in line with Schengen rules, which is also an expectation by European governments. The Dublin Agreement on migrant procedures must also be fully implemented, with respect for human rights and regulations on refugees, he added.
Trocsanyi said he had discussed with Jagland the new Hungarian laws and described the way they are applied. He spoke about experience connected with Hungary’s sealed borders and transit zones, the situation along the border with Croatia and the criminal sanctions that can be imposed on border violators.
The minister highlighted the importance of international and civil organisations in resolving the current crisis.
“I am convinced that European solidarity is the only way to find a solution to everybody,” he added. In response to a question the minister said the fence on the Hungarian-Serbian border has yielded positive results and sealing the border has proved to be an effective method for solving the problems while relations with Belgrade have remained excellent.
“Nobody likes a fence. This is obvious. But peace and order should be maintained somehow,” he added.
Jagland said recent events on the Hungarian-Serbian border have raised concern and this is why he contacted the Hungarian prime minister.
The secretary-general expressed concern over what happens in the transit zones where the European Convention on Human Rights is still valid, just as outside the zones.
“The convention protects every square centimetre of European territory and the people staying there,” he said.
Jagland also expressed concern for the measures applied against illegal border crossers. Every state has the right to protect its borders and nobody has the right to cross the border illegally but the Convention on Human Rights guarantees the border violators’ right to fair procedures. He said he had been informed about accelerated trials and procedures carried out in containers in Hungary.
The secretary-general also gave voice to concerns about the coercive measures applied and applicable by the police force and the armed forces.
Asked whether he was satisfied with the information presented by Trocsanyi, Jagland said the issue was complex and the Hungarian laws need to be further analysed since so far the only information available is what has been published in the media.
Trocsanyi told MTI over the phone that he discussed migration issues with his Belgian counterpart, too. Neither the Belgian minister, nor Jagland expressed criticism. They had several questions that revealed that the information they had acquired from the press about Hungary was not precise. Trocsanyi said he supplied detailed information to them about the laws that entered force in September and promised to send them the official translations.
“They all realised that Hungary is in an extremely difficult situation,” Trocsanyi said. The minister said his visit to Strasbourg contributed to making Hungary’s image realistic. The international media has created an image that is “actually far from the truth”, he said.
Hungary’s response to the migration crisis has been to protect its borders, register the migrants and act in line with the regulations, unlike other countries that “closed their eyes and suspended certain legal regulations”, he said.