On Friday, György Bakondi, Chief Security Advisor to the Prime Minister, told public television channel M1 that, with recently proposed stricter measures, the Government of Hungary wishes to reinforce the legal aspects of the country’s border protection system.

The Chief Security Advisor said that the essence of the change is that migrants who are apprehended within eight kilometres of the border, but who cannot be proved to have entered Hungary by committing a crime – damaging the border fence – should be sent to the transit zones, where they can apply for asylum. Mr. Bakondi stressed that these people would not be subject to full criminal proceedings, but only proceedings for minor offences.

According to the Chief Security Advisor, the timeframe for evaluating asylum applications has not changed: it still takes approximately 72 hours. Those who do not qualify for asylum or protected status will be returned to another safe country.

Concerning the twenty-strong police contingent which Hungary sent to Greece on Friday to support EU border protection, Mr. Bakondi said that its members have a lot of experience in the duties they will be engaged in.