“Europe is facing a migration crisis, not a refugee crisis”, Government Spokesperson Zoltán Kovács told German national public television station ZDF on Friday.

In an interview aired as part of compilation entitled “What should we do with Europe?”, in reply to the suggestion that Hungary is one of the largest beneficiaries of EU funding, yet it is not willing to accept refugees, Mr. Kovács stressed that the two issues cannot be linked and that Europe is not suffering from a refugee crisis.

“Last year alone, 1.2 million people arrived in Europe, and most of them did not come from Syria. The Hungarian authorities have registered immigrants from 104 countries. This also indicates the fact that we are talking about ‘mass migration at an intercontinental level’, and should proceed accordingly. It is Hungary obligation under the regulations controlling the Schengen Area to prevent all those who are not authorised to do so from entering the Schengen Area, and accordingly has taken the required steps to stop illegal migration along its border with Serbia”, the Government Spokesperson explained.

“And this has absolutely nothing to do with monies received from the European Union’s structural funds”, Mr. Kovács stressed. Referring to a recent comment by German EU Commission Günther Oettinger, he added that countries who receive funding are not the only ones who benefit from EU funding, net contributors such as Germany also do.

In reply to a question on whether Hungary was in breach of European and international laws on refugees, the Government Spokesperson declared that this was not at all the case and that there exists no fundamental human right stating that everyone is free to choose in which country they want to live request asylum.

“The majority of people arriving in Europe do not receive asylum at all, and this gives rise to the question of whether it is a humane procedure to let hundreds of thousands of people into Europe and then sent them back because they are not entitled to protection, and whether it would perhaps be better to stop them at the EU border and ascertain who is eligible for asylum status and who isn’t”, Mr. Kovács said.

“Left wing politicians, however, are ‘inviting people from the whole world’ and are encouraging them to break international law by entering countries illegally. In contrast, according to the Hungarian Government decision on the asylum status of the ‘hundreds of thousands and millions’ of people who are trying to get to Europe should be made outside the territory of the European Union, and the Schengen regulations must be enforced”, the Government Spokesperson added.

With relation to the fact that Hungary was the first country to construct a fence along its border to stop refugees, Mr. Kovács pointed out that Spain has had fences up along the borders of its North African territories for a long time, and the French at also protecting the entrance to the Chanel Tunnel with a fence at Calais.

Mr. Kovács also spoke about the fact that in his opinion demographic problems should not be solved by letting in migrants, however that Hungary is providing protection to applicants who are eligible for political asylum, but these are few and far between. The Government Spokesperson highlighted the fact that the migration that is taking place along Europe’s borders represents a serious danger, and no region or continent is handling the problem as “irresponsibly” as Europe.