Hungary and Serbia will join forces to stop potential migration waves and so protect Europe, including Germany, where many of the migrants are headed, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said, after talks with his Serbian counterpart, Ana Brnabić.
Orbán told a joint press conference after the meeting that Europe had to be protected from a new wave of possibly millions of people heading towards Europe in the wake of “the US failure in Afghanistan”. Should the migrants choose to travel by land, Serbia and Hungary will find themselves in a very difficult situation, he said. “Governments, NGOs and Soros organisations previously in favour of migration” are now clearly just as ready to support migration from Afghanistan, Orbán said. This, however, is diametrically opposed to Hungary and Serbia’s interests, he said.
Serbia’s European Union membership is key to the bloc’s safety, he said. “We are protecting Hungary and Serbia, we are protecting ourselves but we all know these migrants do not want to live here, they are on their way to Germany. So when we protect ourselves, we are also protecting Europe, including Germany, as we did so many times over the centuries. This is true even if we get no appreciation, let alone gratitude,” he said. Answering a question, Orbán said migration pressure is expected to grow, since “there are already around 4 million internally displaced people in Afghanistan”. “If this crowd finds a way out and leaves, they will make their way through Turkey to the region of Hungary and Serbia,” he said.
The two countries will have to strengthen their southernmost defence lines to stop migration, Orbán said. At the same time, “Germany’s stance, whether they want migration to be stopped or want to open a humanitarian corridor, remains to be seen”. “History has shown that we were never given help but rather designated as a bumper zone when internal regions of Europe were threatened and we had to protect Europe,” Orbán said. “They continued that practice for centuries. I can’t see any sign of that approach changing,” he said. Orbán insisted that Hungary had protected Germany in the 2015 migration crisis “while the Germans continued to stab us in the back, in the rule of law procedure as well as on the issue of erecting a border fence”. “We can only count on ourselves but we are strong enough to face that challenge,” he said. “In no way will they make a refugee camp out of Hungary or Serbia. In no way will they set up hotspots here. In no way will security issues sideline economic development, we simply can’t afford that,” he said.