The Prime Minister said at the Chicago NATO summit that Hungary will offer half a million US dollars annually over a period of three years for the financing of the Afghan security forces. According to the Prime Minister, the Afghanistan contribution is a realistic burden for the country, representing one and a half million US dollars in total between 2015 and 2017, and is adjusted to Hungary’s economic situation.
Hungarian troops in Afghanistan have rendered an outstanding contribution and have earned wide recognition for Hungary. While the Hungarian contingent is, indeed, not the largest in Afghanistan, it performs a highly important task and will continue to do so also in the future; therefore, Hungary’s involvement is very much relied on.
According to plans, as of 2014 the internal Afghan security forces will maintain security in the country. We shall withdraw our combat troops and will leave behind units involved in training who will be able to help and reinforce the local Afghan forces. At the same time, Hungarian military forces will also remain in the Asian country which will, in this new stage, perform the duties that fall on them based on the division of labour within NATO.
Hungary will also take part in the air defence of the Baltic States, the Prime Minister announced. Hungary is able to contribute to smart defence, that is, the elimination of unnecessary overlaps, with its air force. As part of this, Hungary will station fighter planes in the Baltic region and will regularly participate in the maintenance of air defence for the Baltic States that do not have air defence forces of their own.
You may rely on us within the boundaries of Central-European solidarity and cooperation; we shall engage in particularly close cooperation with Lithuania, the Prime Minister stressed.
According to Viktor Orbán, the schedule of the NATO summit was determined by common sense. NATO and Russia should build a long-term cooperation that provides stability and enhances trust. „Russia exists, existed and will continue to exist as a country that we have to reckon with; it is a major country with considerable power”, Orbán said, and added that we all have an interest in ensuring that that part of the world should not look upon the West as an enemy, while we also have an interest in ensuring that the West should likewise not look upon Russia with hostility.
The Americans handed over the establishment of the missile shield and it has thereby become a NATO affair; the construction of a missile defence system and the „star wars plans” have become more acceptable also for the wider international public.
We are in Chicago in order to prove and to tell the entire world, NATO exists. This is a defence alliance; whichever way the world may change, those who form part of this alliance may feel safe.
The Prime Minister also spoke about the elections in Serbia and said that as Serbian and Hungarian interests coincide in a number of respects, we sincerely hope that Hungary will find a successful tone of cooperation and common topics with Tomislav Nikolic, the winner of the presidential elections held on Sunday in Serbia. This was the Serbian people’s decision. Not only do we respect this decision of the Serbian people but we very much appreciate it as well, he stressed.
Hungary maintained excellent relations also with the former President and as the Serbian and Hungarian peoples have a great deal in common, we shall be able to find a tone that will lead to successful cooperation with the winner of the presidential elections on Sunday.
Orbán spoke about Hungary’s situation. While Hungary is struggling with many difficulties, everyone can see that it is full of vitality; everyone can see that it has always been an important country and will continue to remain one. Hungary is a reliable partner in the region, and everyone is happy to cooperate with us, he said.