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Budapest (MTI) – The friendship between Hungary and Poland can serve as an example to other European countries, especially those of the central and eastern European region, Hungary’s parliamentary speaker said on Sunday.

Looking back at recent history, it should be remembered that Hungary does not have as good relations with every country as it does with Poland and that Poland also has its conflicts with certain countries, László Kövér told public Kossuth Radio.

“Looking at the map from the Baltic region to the Balkans we see a diverse range of ethnicities and the road to mutual respect and the mutual recognition of dignity is a long one,” Kövér said in the interview marking the year of Hungarian-Polish friendship.

Hungary once again finds itself in an alliance with Poland but the two countries are at odds with their other allies regarding other matters, such as the migrant crisis, Kövér said. This is another challenge that binds Hungary and Poland together, he added.

He said the Visegrad Four grouping of Hungary, the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovakia are connected by their shared basic values and interests. There are binding elements between the four countries that inspire their governments to try to pursue pragmatic cooperation with the other three with a view to promoting their shared interests. “We’ve all understood that the European Union … is a terrain for a battle of interests,” Kövér said. So if the V4 join forces in this battle they can hold enough weight that the older, western European member states, have to take into account, he added.

The V4 “can only be strong and independent if they form strong and lasting ties amongst each other which they can make use of in a way that allows them to combine the strengths of their countries”, Kövér said.

Within the V4 alliance, the relationship between Hungary and Poland is extra special, but it is important that this should have no impact on how the group operates, he said.

Kövér added that over the course of their histories, the V4 countries had gone through both highs and lows on their paths of development. By now the four countries have learned to put aside their differences on matters that they “know they can’t find common ground on” and are able to focus on ones in which they have shared interests, the speaker said.

Source: MTI

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