Migration and related problems remain Hungary and Europe’s main challenges, government spokesman Zoltán Kovács said at the Hungarian embassy in London on Monday.
Hungary has been criticised for not respecting European values and not acting in line with regulations, he told Hungarian and British journalists. “But really what we see is the European Union that is not sticking to the regulations.”
Hungary resolutely rejects being punished because others in 2015-2016 failed to respect the rules, he said.
“Any form of a quota system or algorithm that aims to spread the consequences of illegal migration is a bad idea”, he said.
The Hungarian government opposes the position that migration could be beneficial and it is convinced that migration must be stopped at the EU’s borders, he said. It also opposes the principle that migration should be considered a human right, he added.
“Migration is very expensive and integration or assimilation — as it is referred to in western Europe — is not possible,” Kovács said, adding that Hungary would reject proposals or measures resulting in problems that have already come to pass in western Europe being replicated in Hungary and its neighbourhood.
Commenting on Brexit and a visit by Boris Johnson, the UK foreign minister, in Budapest last week, he cautioned against “punishing” the UK and called for a “fair Brexit“. Hungary is convinced that a “good” agreement on Brexit is possible, he said. It is too early to talk about future cooperation options between Hungary and the UK, and it is necessary to wait and see what agreement the EU-27 sign with the UK, the spokesman added. Hungary insists that acquired rights of EU citizens living in the UK should not be taken away, he said.
In response to a question about the “Stop Soros” bill, he said it aims at removing loopholes in legal regulations connected with migration. One serious problem is that many of the NGOs that present themselves as human rights organisations are in reality working to help illegal migration, he said. The protection of EU borders is the task of member countries and specialised EU organisations, and the involvement of NGOs is unnecessary, he insisted. Where there is a need for humanitarian aid, this must be supplied in an regulated way, Kovács added.
Photo: MTI/EPA/Alba Feixas