Serious mistakes were made in the European Union in the past few year which will have to be set right, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told public news channel m1 after the extraordinary meeting of the heads of state and government of the European Union to nominate the new heads of EU bodies after the May elections.
The extraordinary session was convened for Sunday, and postponed on Monday after the European Council failed to reach an agreement in a marathon session.
The meeting resumed on Tuesday, when the council nominated German politician Ursula von der Leyen for the position of head of the European Commission, Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel for head of the European Council and Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell for High Representative for the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.
Orbán said in the interview that although economic policy, migration policy and “respect for the nations” were still problematic issues, the chances to find a solution were much better now.
The future still “holds battles” as differences in opinion prevail, he said.
“An important victory has been achieved but new debates keep coming up in international politics,” he said. “At least now we have the strength to stand up for ourselves,” he added.
The Visegrad Group‘s role is especially important now, and not only in light of the recent events, Orbán said. The alliance of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia and Poland is a “success story”, he said, as the group of nations showing the most solidarity with each other within the bloc.
Orbán praised Andrej Babis, prime minister of the Czech Republic which currently holds the V4 rotating presidency, for keeping the group united.
The Visegrad Group leaders represent 62 to 63 million people together, their combined trade volume with Germany exceeds that of France or Italy, and these countries have the fastest economic growth and fastest falling unemployment rate, he noted.
Two politicians were considered for EC head who would have been “more than bad” for Hungary, as they had demonstrated that they did not respect the country or its citizens, Orbán said. Their nomination was successfully “thwarted”, he said, and they were replaced with a German mother of seven.
“This in itself shows that change is afoot in Europe,” he said.