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No major decisions should be made before the EP elections “when European citizens will make their choice”, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said at a meeting of Visegrad Group prime ministers and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

V4-Germany cooperation must continue after the May elections, he said after what he called talks marked by “a positive and sincere tone”. Orbán said the participants had been the EU’s “core states” that “stand out with their performance”. Based on their public debt, budget deficit, exports, unemployment rate and structural reforms, they constitute Europe’s core states and, together with Germany, the economic engine of Europe, he said.

The EU “will not be the same as it was before” once the elections have taken place. “We want a democratic EU whose character and directions will be decided upon by the people,” he said.

“We can discuss whether democracy should be liberal, illiberal or Christian, but the people cannot be omitted from its formula. Should we neglect the will of European citizens, we would not be building a European Union but an empire and would go back to where we started off 30 years ago when we revolted against having to act on instructions from that empire’s headquarters”.