The Government will present to the UN a twelve-point proposal related to migration, stressing that immigration is a negative phenomenon, and everyone must be helped where they live, János Lázár, the Minister heading the Prime Minister’s Office said at the press conference Governmentinfo 110 which he held jointly with Government Spokesperson Zoltán Kovács.

The Minister heading the Prime Minister’s Office said the cabinet will recommend in 12 points that the UN should not introduce mandatory regulations for its members in connection with immigration.

The government finds the UN’s draft related to migration shocking, stated the Minister who believes that this process is a security challenge for every country, and it should be stopped rather than organised.

The government is convinced – contrary to what the UN suggests – that migration is not a fundamental human right. He added that it leads to the development of parallel societies, it benefits neither the recipient, nor the issuer countries, while it is equally bad for those who leave their countries. Therefore everyone must be helped in their own countries or must be given temporary help so that they can return to their homeland at a later point in time.

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People smugglers are the primary beneficiaries of immigration, he added, while he also stressed that the right of every country to decide who may live in their territory and who may cross their borders must be respected. In his view, it is not only a right, but also a duty of countries sharing a single international community to protect their borders. Prohibited border crossing is a criminal offence, he pointed out. The cabinet believes that the UN should support countries in their efforts to preserve their historical, religious and cultural traditions and their social arrangements.

The Minister drew attention to NATO’s projection which asserts that up to 2020 some 60 million people will set out for Europe, meaning that Western Europe will become an immigrant area. In his view, this can only be prevented with legal and physical border closure measures.

Mr Lázár also said that the government had requested the Constitutional Court’s position regarding the issue of immigration. The cabinet seeks to find an answer to the question as to whether under international law it can surrender the support pillars of statehood and the representation of those pillars. They are asking the Constitutional Court to interpret the provisions of the Fundamental Law on four issues in order to find out what scope for manoeuvre there is in connection with asylum and whether the cabinet can approve the resettlement of people into the country, the Minister said.

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Negotiations with the European Union have started as to ways in which Hungary could “recover” its border protection expenditures amounting to EUR 1 billion, Mr Lázár told the press. Szabolcs Takács, Minister of State at the Prime Minister’s Office will lead the negotiations on behalf of the Hungarian party.

Mr Lázár informed members of the press about the proceedings of the informal EU summit held on 23 February. He said in the debate on the internal reform of the EU such absurd proposals had also been made as that the more than seventy seats in the European Parliament that would be vacated after Britain’s departure could even be filled with immigrants.

He also said that south of the Hungarian border a “migrant dictionary” is being distributed which instructs migrants in the terms they should use upon reaching the border so that they enjoy the protection of the European Union’s asylum system. The brochure was made by a German foundation financed by George Soros, he said, observing that George Soros teaches immigrants how to say, for instance, that they lost their families during their flight, that they are traumatised, or that they were discriminated against in their homeland.

Government to provide compensation for those wronged by Szeviép

The government will provide full compensation up to EUR 200,000, the equivalent of some HUF 62 million, for those wronged by Szeviép, the Minister announced.

The bankruptcy of the company which Mr Lázár customarily refers to as “the in-house business of the Szeged Municipality” caused some five hundred South Alföld businesses – mostly small and medium-sized enterprises – to sustain losses. Szeviép’s debts amount to HUF 11 billion in total. The businesses concerned will have to contact the county government office in March, and as expected they will receive their damages by the end of April. The government will reimburse the difference to those who already sold their receivables for less than HUF 62 million.

Mr Lázár remarked it would be good if the City of Szeged also assumed some responsibility in the case. As he said, for the time being even the judiciary has let the wronged victims down as there has been no progress in the criminal case for years.

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Chickenpox vaccine to be made compulsory

The vaccine against chickenpox will be compulsory in the future. The government also decided to vaccinate health care workers serving at the country’s eastern and north-eastern borders – some 30,000 people – against measles.

The practice pay of general practitioners and basic dental care practices will increase by HUF 130,000 to HUF 520,000 in the future, Mr Lázár announced.

The cabinet also approved the installation of a frost damage prevention radar system to the value of HUF 2 billion in the South Alföld region at the request of the Chamber of Agriculture.

There are ongoing talks between the two countries regarding a high-speed passenger railway line between Budapest and Warsaw or Budapest and Krakow, Mr Lázár said in answer to a question, adding that EU funds could also be used for the project, while the raising of private capital is likewise an option.

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Either Prime Minister Viktor Orbán or Soros’s people will form government

In Mr Lázár’s view there will be two options after the parliamentary elections of 8 April: either Prime Minister Viktor Orbán or George Soros’s people will form a government. The Minister heading the Prime Minister’s Office said the elections will be about whether “we can protect Hungary against immigration”.

Mr Lázár believes in recent years Fidesz-KDNP have done everything they could to protect the country and to represent national interests, for instance, with the construction of the border fence. The most authentic representative of the protection of Hungarian sovereignty is Viktor Orbán and the Fidesz-KDNP alliance, he stressed.

In answer to a question Mr Lázár responded to reports regarding the possible withdrawal of opposition candidates in favour of one another by saying that those who enter into alliance from George Soros’s money in order to organise immigration betray their country and their electors.

It is now time to cooperate

The politician also spoke about the Sunday mayoral election held in Hódmezővásárhely in which the candidate supported by the opposition won. He said the time for competing has come to an end, it is now time to cooperate. The local Fidesz group is prepared to take part in constructive work for the city: “for us Hódmezővásárhely comes first, the development of the city is our number one priority”, said the Member of Parliament for the constituency and former mayor of the city. He thanked Fidesz supporters for standing by the party as this is “important encouragement and guidance”, and also congratulated the winner Péter Márki-Zay.

He stressed in answer to a question that he has never given up a single fight yet, and he will work as hard as he can for the trust of electors as a candidate in the constituency in the upcoming parliamentary elections. He had this to say to his opponents: “There will be more of János Lázár, rather than less”. He answered in the negative in response to the question as to whether, in light of the Hódmezővásárhely election result, he would make changes to the government’s campaign communication.

He also said that on Thursday morning he and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán had paid a visit to Miskolc where they had met with Mayor Ákos Kriza (Fidesz-KDNP) and had spoken to him about cooperation between the city and the government. He highlighted the most important result is that public security has improved in Miskolc, while he also spoke about the decrease in unemployment in the city and the rise in local trade tax revenues. At the same time, he informed the press that a proposal will be made for the next government meeting regarding the so-called Miskolc Y Bridge.

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Tamás Harangozó, Member of Parliament for MSZP appeared at the scene at the beginning of the press conference. He expected answers from the head of the Prime Minister’s Office regarding the cases of the Kalocsa and Szolnok public lighting programmes. Mr Lázár promised to answer his questions and asked the socialist politician to wait; however, Mr Harangozó left.

During a later part of the press conference the Minister said regarding the topic that the public lighting tender was a good idea of the government of the socialists, they had it approved by the EU, and the local governments concerned made the right decision to take part in it because public lighting had improved significantly in all the settlements concerned and costs had fallen with the introduction of the new technology. The project was investigated by the European Commission as well as by OLAF, the European Anti-Fraud Office. The latter closed the investigation and sent its findings to the government and to the prosecution service which adopted the necessary measures, while the government responded to the findings, he explained, indicating that the managing authority of the development ministry refuted OLAF’s findings item by item. At this point in time the European Commission has not condemned Hungary on any grounds. The Brussels body will ask questions which Hungary will answer within the designated time limit, he said.

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Government cannot tolerate intimidation of Hungarians in Transcarpathia

The Minister said regarding the arson attack on the Ungvár (Uzhhorod) head office of the Transcarpathian Hungarian Cultural Association (KMKSZ) that the Hungarian government cannot tolerate the intimidation of a single Hungarian in Transcarpathia.

He confirmed the cabinet decided to cover the costs of the renovation of the head office building. He further said the government finds it concerning that this was the second atrocity in a month which was committed against Hungarians in Transcarpathia.

Occupancy rate of homeless shelters stands at 90 per cent

Regarding the cold weather the Minister informed the press that the occupancy rate of homeless shelters stands at 90 per cent, while concerning the country’s gas supplies he said the country would have sufficient gas supplies even if the cold weather persisted. At present there are 2.3 billion cubic metres of natural gas in the storage facilities, he said, which would be enough for as many as a hundred days for retail consumers. He observed at the same time that if the energy price rises that characterised the period between 2002-2010 had continued, both electricity and gas would cost substantially more today.

Covering other topics, he said the government will support a tourism development and the construction of a swimming complex in Veszprém, the construction of a roundabout in Baja and a road development project in Mosonmagyaróvár. They will provide additional funds for an industrial site project in Martonvásár, and funds will also be allocated for the installation of surveillance cameras in Pécs. Additionally, the family affairs cabinet decided on the introduction of a family-friendly place trade mark and to support the development of the maternity units of hospitals, he added.

In answer to another question concerning the tennis complex planned to be built on Margitsziget (Margaret Island), the Minister said the government will not support the construction project on the island in this form, even at the risk of being unable to host the planned world tournament in 2019 because the government cannot allow Margitsziget to be “sacrificed”.

(Prime Minister's Office/MTI)