Orban: EU member states at odds over migrant redistribution
European Union member states disagree on how migrants should be distributed across the continent, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told Hungarian reporters ahead of a two-day EU summit in Brussels on Thursday.
Western European member states want to “get rid of the migrants they unjustifiably let in” by distributing them among countries, such as Hungary, that protected themselves and refused to let in any migrants, Orbán said.
“Given that there will never be a consensus on the question of redistributing migrants”, member states should focus at the summit on matters they can agree on, the prime minister said. Among such issues, he mentioned adopting a declaration on the protection of shared EU borders and preventing people unwelcomed by Europeans from entering the continent.
He said he expected member states to reach a consensus on this issue, arguing that most of them agree with a proposal to set up refugee camps along Libya’s northern and southern borders, where economic migrants should be separated from refugees. These camps should also be the place where migrants are registered, subjected to anti-terror screening, he added. Once these procedures are taken care of, only those whose identities are confirmed and who are known not to pose a security risk will be allowed to set foot in Europe, Orbán said.
Reacting to an interview with French President Emmanuel Macron published in several European dailies on Thursday, Orbán said: “Macron’s introduction isn’t too encouraging; he thought the best way to show friendship was to immediately stampede into central European countries. This isn’t how we do things around here, but he’ll soon get to know his way around,” the prime minister added.
In the interview published in Le Figaro, El Pais, Sueddeutsche Zeitung, Corriere della Sera, Le Soir, Le Temps, The Guardian and Gazeta Wyborcza, Macron said certain eastern European politicians had “turned their backs on Europe” with “a cynical approach to the union that only served to dispense credit without respecting its values”.