The construction of the temporary technical border fence on the Hungarian-Croatian border began late Thursday night; the fence will be built on a section of 41 kilometres, and the first line of defence will be completed during the course of today, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán stated on the programme '180 minutes' of the radio station Kossuth Rádió.

“We must perform the same operation that we performed at the Serbian-Hungarian border”, the Prime Minister said, pointing out that hundreds of policemen and soldiers have been directed to the Hungarian-Croatian border.

According to Mr Orbán’s information, 600 soldiers are already at the site, during the course of the day another 500 will be directed to the region, and by the end of the week a further 700 military personnel will join them. Additionally, there are some 200 policemen already on the ground, who will be joined by another 100 on Friday, and a further 500 at the weekend. The Western Balkans route continues to exist: while Hungary is able to protect the Hungarian-Serbian border, this has not eliminated the succession of the flood of migrants; “we have to reckon with the scenario that the enormous mass of people who formerly wanted to reach Austria via Hungary will continue to proceed along the southern borders of Hungary”, he said.

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The question is, he continued, how the migrants will continue their journey from Croatia. It is evident that they are planning one of these, not insignificant routes in the direction of Hungary, “and we are trying to avert this”, the Prime Minister said. “There is not a sand dune or mole hill which could provide a hiding place or hope to anyone trying to unlawfully enter the territory of Hungary”, he said.

However, Mr Orbán takes the view that "when there is a problem, we cannot expect help from the south - either from Serbia, or from Croatia". It is even worse news, he continued, that Hungary equally cannot expect help from the West, and “the voices from over there criticising our actions are not diminishing in volume”. In his words, a genre of liberalism may be observed in a section of the European media and European politics which is a “suicidal liberalism” as it jeopardises our own lifestyle.

At the same time, the Prime Minister is hoping that Slovenia will take the protection of the Schengen borders seriously. Mr Orbán also said in the radio interview that the Hungarian authorities have already apprehended a terrorist. As he put it, "we know who organised the attack against the Hungarian State from Serbian territory”. He added: the operation was directed with megaphones in Arabic and in English, "with an organised media background”.

Regarding the events in Röszke on Wednesday, the Prime Minister said: an armed attack was launched on Hungary and the Hungarian police – who fully observed the rules of humanity – from the direction of Serbia which Serbia did not even attempt to prevent.  “We wish to prove (…) that while a flood of people may well be on their way towards Europe, if everyone fulfils their obligations this flood can be stopped, it can be kept within controlled limits, and it can be made intelligible”, the Prime Minister said.

Concerning the latter, Mr Orbán drew attention to the fact that Europe has no idea whom it is letting in: this is not a simple immigration problem. We must also seriously talk about the threat, the threat of terrorism. At the same time, the Prime Minister repeatedly stood up for the members of the Muslim community living in Hungary who, he stressed, are valuable people. In this context, he highlighted: we must be careful that Hungarian views arguing in favour of a Christian Europe should not take on an anti-Islamic stance. Hungary will never pursue an anti-Islamic policy, he stated.

As regards the European management of illegal migration, he said: today we must concentrate every effort on putting an end to the succession of illegal migration. This “business chain” must be disrupted. The protection of the borders is the first priority, and after that we may start talking about the placement of those who are already inside, he reiterated his view. The Prime Minister pointed out that the very idea that money issues – the withdrawal of some of the Structural Funds – should be linked to the issue of migration – quota system – is a political crime.

The Prime Minister reiterated his position on EU funds: “we would be a mere colony” if the enormous differences between the former communist countries which newly joined the EU and the old EU Member States continued to survive. Europe has developed certain economic mechanisms, he explained, for the very reason that the newly entering countries should not exist on the level of economic colonies but should be able to participate in a fair competition.

Regarding the appointment of the spokesperson of the Fidesz parliamentary group, Antal Rogán as the Prime Minister’s cabinet chief, the Prime Minister said: the position of the cabinet chief “is part of the remedying of weaknesses”. “I have too much on my plate (…) I, too, need younger people and more help”, he said.



(Prime Minister's Office/MTI)