“It is no exaggeration to state that in the upcoming period we can expect the rebirth of Hungarian-American relations”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó declared at the July 4 celebrations held by the United States Embassy in Budapest, where he and recently appointed U.S. Ambassador David B. Cornstein both gave speeches.

Mr. Szijjártó stressed that, similarly to the American people, the Hungarians are also true freedom fighters and greatly appreciate the freedom and independence for which they have had to fight on many occasions during their history.

DownloadPhoto: Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

“Another similarity between the United States and Budapest is the way the international press handles the U.S. and Hungarian governments”, the Minister said. Referring to these common characteristics, he confirmed that Hungary will not be joining the chorus of European voices that criticise the United States and Hungary “almost obsessively”, and will continue to approach American foreign and domestic policy decisions “in a balanced way and while refraining from any and all criticism and comment”, he said.

Mr. Szijjártó highlighted the fact that the United States is Hungary’s largest export market outside the European Union. American enterprises now represent the second largest investor community in Hungary, and the 1700 American companies currently operating in Hungary provide jobs to one hundred thousand Hungarians, he explained. The Minister also stressed that Hungary is also not just supporting Washington with words with relation to military operations, since Hungarian soldiers are serving in the Global Coalition against ISIS, as well as in Afghanistan and the Western Balkans.

DownloadPhoto: Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

The Hungarian Foreign Minister also noted that he fully understands President Trump’s standpoint with relation to border protection, and agrees with the principle that only a given country can decide who it will or will not allow onto its territory.

In his speech to the several hundred people who had gathered in the garden of the Ambassador’s residence for the event, the new U.S. Ambassador, David B. Cornstein stressed: July 4 is an important day for all Americans, irrespective of their financial position or the colour of their skin, and for first-year and fourth generation immigrants alike. On this day, people throughout the United States celebrate freedom, the rule of law, freedom of the press, freedom of religion and freedom of speech. Ambassador Cornstein emphasised that these are not just words, and their importance is also proven by the actions of the United States.

DownloadPhoto: Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

The Ambassador, who presented his credentials to President János Áder on 25 June, stressed that he will be working with Hungary in the interests of establishing the best ever bilateral relations.

The American diplomat said it was remarkable that although the new embassy staff had only been in Hungary for ten days, they were able to invite almost a thousand friends of the United States to the July 4 celebrations. Ambassador Cornstein commended and expressed his gratitude for the work of David Kostelancik, who directed the operations of the American Embassy in Budapest as Chargé d’affaires from January 2017.

(Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade/MTI)