“The European Union must face the fact that both the instability of the Sahel region and the Libyan conflict could easily give rise to a renewed surge and a further increase in migration pressure”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said on Monday in Brussels in the recess of a meeting of EU foreign ministers.

In a statement to Hungarian reporters, the Minister emphasised: “Hungary greatly appreciates Germany’s efforts with relation to the Libyan situation, which has placed the United States, Russia, China and the European Union on a similar platform with relation to an international conflict”.

Mr. Szijjártó pointed out that a solution to the situation in Libya will play a huge role in the development of future migration risks to the European Union. “With relation to Libya, Hungary regards the aspect of migration as extremely important and accordingly it is supporting all efforts that could lead to a ceasefire and to a political solution”, he stated.

In this regard, he said it as important that the Sophia EU fleet operating on the Mediterranean Sea in the interests of finding and eradicating people smuggling boats should in no way result in the development of renewed migration pressure. “And that the operation should not be exploited to enable its ships to transport more migrants into the territory of the European Union”, he highlighted.

With relation to the Sahel Zone, he underlined that the zone plays a major part in the migration aimed at Europe. “It is with relation to this region that Hungary’s migration policy, according to which assistance must be taken to where the trouble is instead of bringing the trouble here, is being confirmed to the most obvious extent”, the Minister said.

Mr. Szijjártó said that to this end, Hungary is supporting the extension of the mandate of EU training missions aimed at facilitating the reform of the defence sectors of these countries, in the interests of preserving and developing their stability. “Hungary has tripled its presence and has increased the number of its participants in EU missions aimed at consolidating stability and curbing terrorism to 21”, he added.

“The EU should finally stop focussing on how to distribute the migrants who arrive in Europe, and should instead create the conditions to enable people who live in difficulties to not want to leave their homelands”, the Minister declared, adding that a reassuring solution is still far off with relation to both problems.

In response to a question from the press concerning the vote on the state of the rule of law in Poland and Hungary held at last week’s plenary session of the European Parliament, Mr. Szijjártó said the European People’s Party (EPP) is “moving towards the Left with huge strides”. “It is clearly visible that some of the party group’s leaders would like the People’s Party to practice what they call centrist politics, which are even more left-wing than their current position” “There are however some, in addition to Hungary, who believe that the EPP would be successful if it practiced staunch right-wing politics”, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade added.