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Hungary's government is not backing either the EPP’s Manfred Weber or the Socialists' Frans Timmermans for the role of European Commission president, the state secretary for international communications and relations said.

Addressing a news conference, Zoltán Kovács said Weber had “insulted the Hungarian people multiple times in recent months” and accused Timmermans of “constantly lying about Hungary” over the course of the European Parliament election campaign.

The state secretary cited Weber as saying during the campaign that he did not want to be elected EC president with supporting votes from Hungary’s ruling parties. He also cited the European People’s Party’s spitzenkandidat as having said last December that in the vote on the Sargentini report, he had voted not against Orbán or Fidesz, but against Hungary as a whole. Kovács said these quotes disqualified Weber from being backed by Hungary “in any candidate race”.

Turning to Timmermans, Kovács said the Dutch candidate had told “several pages worth of lies” about Hungary on matters such as press freedom, the rule of law and anti-Semitism. The Hungarian government, he said, would only support EC presidential candidates who respect the bloc’s member states, do not apply double standards, fight to stop migration and defend Europe’s Christian roots.