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“Migration is the most important issue facing Europe’s future,” Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said in an interview published in daily Magyar Nemzet and local papers ahead of the European Parliament election. The EP vote, he added, would decide “whether we are able to preserve the continent’s cultural identity and its civilisation based on Christian foundations.”
“Brussels is making a very strong effort to change Europe in its entirety,” he said. “Some politicians, parties, governments, business circles, academic networks … think that Europe should ditch Christian culture and the historical sweep of the nation and set up a united states of Europe,” he said. This would entail “mixed populations in which neither Christian nor national identity means anything.” Europe’s left wing, he said, “wants a mixed population” in Europe because “they seek to eliminate nations” even though “Europe’s success is made by successful nation states”. “If Hungary had had a leftist government … our cities would look like some of those in Germany or France, with hundreds of thousands of migrants from Africa or the Middle East,” he said.
The prime minister insisted his government’s “values of patriotism, respect for Europe’s Christian culture, supporting families, protecting jobs, striving for full employment, raising minimum wages and having security issues as a top priority on the agenda” all accorded with the interests of the Hungarian people. The Hungarian opposition, however, is “pushing” such ideals as a united states of Europe and gender ideology “aimed at changing the traditional relationship between man and woman”. Such ideals are alien to the vast majority of society, he said.
On the subject of ruling Fidesz party’s membership of the European People’s Party, Orbán said that “Fidesz will stay a member if that is in Hungary’s interest.” This, he added, would depend on the direction the EPP takes. The issue of migration has divided the EPP, Orbán said.
Referring to the Visegrad Group in which four prime ministers cooperate while belonging to four different party groups, he said the role of prime ministers would trump that of political parties.
Meanwhile, in an interview to Hír TV, Orbán said if he received” strong authorisation” from voters “clearly expressing their desire for the EU to have no pro-migration leaders” he would have better a chance of promoting that desire in the European Council. He insisted that many Europeans now shared Hungary’s position on migration, with the view that “Europe should belong to Europeans”. “A strong, violent, external invasion should not be allowed to change the framework of our lives,” he said. Immigration would not only “create a culture problem” and “destroy public security” but undermine Hungary’s economy, too, Orbán said.
Commenting on Heinz-Christian Strache, Austria’s former vice-chancellor, Orbán said: “The first thing the successors to anti-migration Freedom Party ministers did was to increase the remuneration for migrants.” He went on to say that Chancellor Sebastian Kurz is “under pro-migration pressure” and “many in and outside are seeking to direct the Austrian government back to the flock of pro-migration governments”.
Concerning German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Orbán noted differences of opinion on “a number of important issues” but said he “more than” respected her because “Germans elected her, she is a lady and her achievements are many “.
Orbán said he saw “no major difference” between the spitzenkandidats of the EPP and of the Socialists because “they all talk the same Brussels blah-blah language”. He urged the EPP to take a rightwards turn. He said he did not envisage a stable political structure in the EU after the election. “Cooperation will work on a case-by-case basis rather than under large, comprehensive agreements,” he said.
Answering a question concerning Russia’s influence, Orbán said the influence of US billionaire George Soros was far more keenly felt. “The interference of that global, liberal mafia is what seems illegitimate,” he said, insisted that it interfered with the Hungarian elections.
Asked about media freedom, Orbán said in western countries some 85% of the media were liberal with the conservative Christian media accounting for 15%. In Hungary “the ratio may be half-and-half.” “Hungary has complete freedom of the media, while that freedom is limited in the West,” the prime minister said.