Orbán: We should be the ones to decide who can enter Hungary

October 27. 2023. – 10:41 AM



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Most Friday mornings, Hungary’s Prime Minister gives an interview on one of the public radio stations. Since the independent media has not had a chance to interview him for several years, these weekly radio interviews are the only opportunity to find out what the leader of the country thinks about current events, how he sees his opponents and any issues at hand.

"We wrestled until late into the night" to make the Brussels bureaucrats give us actual figures, and it turned out that it's not an extra €60 billion that's needed from member states for an increased EU budget, but an extra €100 billion. The EU intends to use this extra money to support Ukraine and they have also asked for extra funds to manage migration, Viktor Orbán said on Hungarian public radio Kossuth on Friday morning. The Hungarian Prime Minister spoke from Brussels on the sidelines of the two-day EU summit.

The Prime Minister believes that Brussels intends to continue with the failed politics that brouth terrorism to us. They (“Brussels”) have brought here the conflicts which originated thousands of kilometers away. They brought trouble here, instead of providing help there, he said. The EU proposal was rejected because it wasn't suitable for adoption, Orbán said. In regards to the matter of Ukraine, “there was a huge battle”, but

"Hungary is neither able to, nor does it want to support" Ukraine, he said.

Brussels leaders are inept according to Orbán

The strategy with which the Brussels leaders " dragged us into the war" has "failed", the Hungarian Prime Minister said. The strategy was for Ukraine to wage a war of self-defence, and we (the EU) would provide the weapons and money needed for it. They even announced the big Ukrainian counter-offensive this year, and as long as it being successful was a realistic goal, us giving money for it was a justifiable position.

But nowadays – although many dare not admit it – this strategy is no longer effective. From the very beginning, Hungarians have said that this is the wrong approach. The Russian President is not about to be ousted in Moscow, and the Ukrainians will not win. In such a situation, one has to stop, there should be a plan B," Orbán explained.

Not only is Brussels facing a financial problem because of this, but a leadership problem as well – which is why, according to the Hungarian Prime Minister, change is needed in Brussels.

The current EU leaders may be able to do their job in peacetime, but they are no good at it in times of war, when there is a storm and there are pirate ships on the horizon, he said.

What needs to change in Brussels?

Orbán believes that there's a need for change in next year's EU elections. "There is a lot at stake, things are getting serious," Orbán said, adding that the Hungarian government needs a confirmation from the people, so there should be another national consultation in Hungary, with 10-11 important questions on which people should have their say. The Hungarian Prime Minister said that this would give him a mandate in Brussels. "Then I could steer Hungary's ship into the Brussels harbour even in the midst of hurricane-like winds".

EU leaders are now more aware of the dangers of migration. Orbán pointed out that years ago, he had already said that we need to think ahead on this issue. "At the time, we were the black sheep," he said. The fence, for example, was unacceptable for Europe, as people would go to the train station to pick up migrants, and give them a warm welcome. "We have won this battle since then," Orbán said. The Hungarian model is successful and is something that all of Europe could adopt.

We said that no one should come in who hasn't received our permission to do so. We cannot have people flooding in, requesting refugee status, and then staying after it's been denied. We clearly stated that they should only be allowed in if they have already indicated their intention to do so outside our borders, and we have decided to allow it.

But instead of the West adopting the successful Hungarian model for dealing with migration, they have sued us, and there will soon be a ruling on that. "That's the nature of this job", we'll see what the outcome is, he concluded.

In Brussels, they believe migrants are pliable

The EU is looking to agree on a deal about migration which would allow migrants to be deported more quickly. But Orbán says migrants can't really be deported.

Migrants live together, they help each other, they “cover for each other”, they don't want to leave. How is – for example – the German police going to enter their circles? And even if the do go in, how will they trasfer them elsewhere? Will they put them in wagons? Orbán said that the belief that they can be deported is “a fairy tale”. “The West messed this up”, they should be the ones fixing it, Orbán said, and added that he doesn't want to dissuade the West from taking in migrants, but Hungary intends to take a different path.

“Why should we share in their trouble? They want to send several thousand migrants to Hungary, and they want to force us to build migrant ghettos where they would bring migrants that they have allowed in. We do have some experience in this. ”They are even shooting" on our southern border.

"We, 'simple country folk' have a hard time getting the people in Brussels to understand how life actually works. They are stuck in a bubble. They think that if they write something down on a piece of paper, it will simply happen," he said.

In Brussels, they believe that migrants are pliable individuals who might even work and make themselves useful, but they also have a past, and they come from a whole different civilisation, which Orbán said was “entirely different from the way people in Europe see things”.

Orbán said that he considers Islam a great cultural achievement which lifted its followers out of barbarism. "The only question is, what is it doing here? Why does it need to be brought here?" – he asked. Who can guarantee that something good will come out of the large-scale coexistence of these two worlds, and not conflict?The PM added that this also has risks when it comes to crime, for example, which Orbán doesn't recommend to the Hungarian people.

"We shouldn't judge others, we shouldn't judge the migration policies of the West,

but the one thing we should fight for is that we should be the ones to decide who can enter Hungary", we should decide what risks we are willing to take in living with others. It's unacceptable that others want to tell us whether or not we should let migrants in. That's a decision only the Hungarians should make.

On why China is important for Hungary

Orbán mentioned that he had started his career as an anti-communist, and that he did not like the period before the regime change in Hungary, even though the Chinese-Hungarian relationship was still good at that time, which is a great advantage now. "This is not something to be squandered." Right now, there is something going on, which makes this relationship particularly advantageous for us. And that is green energy. Fossil energy is getting pushed into the background more and more, and is being replaced by green energy, in which China excels, he explained.

According to Orbán, the Chinese are the global leaders in solar energy, for example. And green energy also needs to be stored, which we simply call batteries. China excels in energy storage, and we need to collaborate with them on this. This is a bigger issue than electromobility, it's also a matter of energy independence, the Hungarian Prime Minister concluded.

Orbán explained that during communism, Hungary had falled back on development compared to other parts of the world, so we must look for opportunities to catch up quickly. One of the answers to this is that if we adopt a new technology ahead of others, then we can make up a lot of lost ground in a relatively short time. And that's why cooperation with China is needed.

Viktor Orbán avoids critical questions at home. It’s been years since he gave an interview to independent media. However, for several years, most Friday mornings he has been a regular guest on state-owned Kossuth Rádió, where he is interviewed by a lead editor of the public broadcasting service (operating from an annual budget of 320 million euros). Katalin Nagy has been almost exclusively the only person allowed to interview Orbán on the state-owned channel throughout his third and fourth term with a two-thirds majority in parliament. She has received the state decoration of the Cross of the Order of Merit of Hungary and doesn’t shy away from asking questions.