European history has entered an “era of war” and people will have to fight for things they have hitherto taken for granted, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán told public radio on Friday.
“Nobody thought on February 24 that the war between Ukraine and Russia will not be just a conflict but mark the end of an era and usher in the new era of war in European history,” Orbán told public broadcaster Kossuth Rádió. Besides the fronts, the war is also being fought in the world economy and especially in the European economy, as shown by rising energy prices, he said.
- One “great battle” will be fought for energy resources and the cost of living and affordable utility costs.
- Another is likely to be a “fight for jobs” as sanctions policies and the war are pushing the European economy into recession, he said.
While Hungary is still facing a labour shortage, Orbán advised “everyone holding a job to value it and do everything they can to keep it, because the next months are expected to bring economic recession in Europe.” The price of electricity has grown five-fold and that of gas three-fold because of the war, he said.
Orbán called on Brussels to “grasp that they have made a mistake”, and the sanctions against Russia have backfired.
The sanctions are currently hurting Europe more than they hurt Russia,
he said. “They thought they could shorten the war through sanctions because weakening Russia would yield swift results, but the war keeps dragging on,” he said. While some countries will have to face a dearth of energy resources, Hungary will have gas, but at a “very high price”, he said.
He also said that military developments must be accelerated by two or three times. He added that he will sign decrees in the next few days that give extra resources to the army.
“We have a problem at the southern border”, he said, adding that “the situation is getting increasingly hard”.
Under the current circumstances, “it would be a luxury” to use soldiers for border protection and police are unable to cope on their own, with many police already transferred to the borders from other parts of the country, Orbán said. A decree on setting up “border hunter” units could be signed as soon as this afternoon, he added.
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