“Hungary and Germany share many common points in their perception of the migration crisis, but Hungary rejects mandatory distribution and insists on the fact that security must come first”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said on Tuesday in Berlin on Phoenix German national public television.

The Minister said that common points include the protection of external borders, as also indicated by the fact that both Hungary and Germany are assisting the protection of the Macedonian-Greek border with police.

“We are also in full agreement with regard to the fact that national development policy must be reinforced”, he added. As he explained, this is why he and German Minister of Economic Cooperation and Development Gerd Müller have concluded a water management agreement that involves African and Middle Eastern countries from which many refugees have arrived in Europe.

“However, in Hungary’s opinion the issue of security must be put in first place”, Mr. Szijjártó added, highlighting the fact that the increased threat of terrorism is most certainly related to the fact that “hundreds of thousands of people have migrated into Europe without any kind of checks”.

He stressed that Hungary rejects the “selective and discriminative” interpretation of the concept of solidarity, and cannot accept the viewpoint according to which protecting borders is not an expression of solidarity.

“Hungary is protecting its borders using all available means and at huge financial expense to ensure that masses of peoples do not enter Europe illegally, and by doing so it is also protecting Germany, Austria and the countries of Scandinavia. 90 percent of the people who attempt to cross the border illegally actually want to reach Germany”, the Minister highlighted.

“We must not allow the perspective of security to be pushed into the background, and an agreement that includes the mandatory redistribution of refugees can never be reached because Hungary rejects it”, Mr. Szijjártó said in the interview, excerpts of which were aired on Phoenix television late on Tuesday evening.

In the interview, which can be viewed in its entirety on the television station’s internet portal, the Minister highlighted with relation to the “Stop Soros” legislative package that anyone who violates Hungary’s national security interests must face the consequences.

“Organisations that support the illegal crossing of borders and illegal migration, or which attempt to assist people who are not eligible for asylum to be granted asylum must also count on having to face the consequences”, Mr. Szijjártó said.

With relation to French President Emmanuel Macron’s plans for EU reform, he recalled German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s warning, according to which every EU member state must do it “homework” with relation to the structure of public finances.

Mr. Szijjártó stressed that Hungary has performed these tasks, but does not support attempts to end the competition that has developed between member states within the field of taxes via unification or the raising of obligations relating to the reduction of government debt to community level.  As he explained, Hungary does not regard the French President’s proposals as irresponsible, but it has its concerns.

With relation to the sanctions against Russia, Mr. Szijjártó stressed: “Hungary has never broken EU unity and regards it as unacceptable that it should be accused of maintaining overly friendly relations with Russia because of its pragmatic standpoint, which is based on historical experience”.

“This is an expression of double standards”, he added, pointing out that despite the sanctions, “behind the scenes” extremely close ties have been established between German and Russian enterprises.