The Orbán administration changed its mind on a crucial issue. According to a government decree published on March 7, NATO could deploy armed forces only in Dunántúl (Transdanubia) in Hungary. However, the administration modified that this Tuesday but did not explain why.
Mfor.hu spotted first that the Hungarian government modified the regulation on NATO armed force deployment in the country. The military alliance, which Hungary has been a member of since 1999, had permission to deploy troops in Hungary’s Transdanubia until this Tuesday.
Based on a March 7 government decree,
NATO was allowed to cross Hungary on land or air.
Furthermore, they were permitted to deploy arms and armed forces in the Transdanubia. However, that decree was in effect for only three months. From this Tuesday on, the Hungarian government allows NATO to have armed forces everywhere in Hungary. That means the military alliance can perform movements, training, drills, and deploy troops anywhere in Hungary.
444.hu wrote that the government did not give an explanation why they changed their previous regulation. However, the media outlet reminded us that the Orbán administration insisted on strengthening Eastern European NATO battlegroups during the last session of the Bucharest Nine. NATO Secretary-General announced yesterday that they would do so.
The new Hungarian rule means that NATO may deploy troops near the Ukrainian-Hungarian border.
Portfolio.hu reported that American and Hungarian troops started a joint military exercise at a training base in Hajdúhadház on Wednesday. Defence minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky said there that soldiers in the region had the dual task of carrying out humanitarian activities while also protecting the borders of Hungary. Hungary, as a NATO member, can rely on its allies in fulfilling these tasks, he said.
Szalay-Bobrovniczky said that there were domestic and international exercises, joint training and preparation events and tasks each year which involved soldiers from NATO member countries arriving in Hungary. Protecting the security of Hungarians is a priority for the government, and the Hungarian and US soldiers carrying out joint patrols under the arrangements of NATO also serve this purpose, he said, noting that Hungarian and US soldiers serve together in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Featured image: US military vehicles in Hajdúhadház.
Source: 444.hu, Népszava, mfor.hu, DNH