Budapest, March 18 (MTI) – The presidents of Hungary and Poland stressed the importance of enforcing the Minsk agreements in connection with the possible elimination of European sanctions against Russia.
Hungary’s János Áder and Andrzej Duda, his Polish counterpart, met for talks in Budapest on Friday.
After the talks, Ader insisted that as a precondition for further steps all parties should adhere to the Minsk agreements. Lifting the sanctions is desirable because they seriously hurt the economy, Áder said.
Concerning the possible scrapping of the sanctions, Duda said the first step should be to assess whether Russia is sticking to the agreements.
Áder: V4 major help in ‘sobering up’ EU
The Visegrad Group (V4) has made a significant contribution to “sobering Europe up” and help its leaders get a clearer picture of the migrant crisis, President János Áder said after talks with his Polish counterpart on Friday.
Addressing a joint press conference with Andrzej Duda, Áder said that regardless of the kind of deal EU leaders put together with Turkey in Brussels, the fact that the migration crisis is not just a humanitarian but a national security issue as well, is no longer up for debate.
It has also become evident that the continent’s borders have to be protected and that the migrant inflow must be stopped, he said, adding that most EU politicians now admit that it is time to take action.
Failure to understand the whole of the problem will also result in failure to resolve it, he said.
Áder said Europe’s belated response to the crisis led to human smugglers making “billions” in profits and given that taking advantage of the plights of refugees is a great way for human smugglers to make money, they will do “whatever it takes” to find new routes into Europe.
Áder said it is no longer just the EU but other countries as well that have a responsibility to offer solutions to the crisis.
Since many migrants will likely be forced to live in refugee camps for years to come, as they cannot return to their homelands, it would be unacceptable for Europe to cut spending on providing care for migrants.
Áder said it was likely that the US and the more prosperous Arab countries would also have to contribute funds for providing care for refugees.
Duda said if the EU fails to come up with specific proposals for resolving the crisis, it will only deepen further. Europe will only be able to preserve freedom and safety within the Schengen Area if it takes concrete bold measures to solve the crisis. The EU should provide financial aid to Greece, where the majority of migrants are stranded, and to countries that house a large number of Syrians in refugee camps, he added.