The Hungarian foreign minister has accused a German colleague of having little conception of reality after he insisted the Paris attacks showed Europe should move to politically integrate more fully.
German Federal Foreign Office minister of state Michael Roth made the comments yesterday, as he urged Europe not to become “divided” by the Paris attacks.
Calling on the European Union to “uphold the rule of law” in relation to nations accepting illegal migrants and refugees whether they wanted them or not, he said terrorism should not be allowed to be mistaken with immigration, “not even in Hungary’s case”. The minister of state said the terror killings had been an attack on European values, and it was now down to the European Union to enforce those values.
European “solidarity” would continue, he said, and the power bloc should now lead decision makers on how to act with “humanity”.
Angered by the comments, Hungarian foreign minister Péter Szijjártó struck back, saying that while the Germans were worrying over whether European rules about treating immigrants well were being followed, the Hungarians were more interested in making sure Europe’s rules about protecting borders were being enforced.
Taking aim at the German minister, he said “Michael Roth’s words have very little to do with reality,” reports magyarhirlap.hu.
He said: “Hungary is a constitutional state and will enforce Europe’s common regulations even if other states do not… Hungary will do everything in accordance with the common European rules to protect our own, and external borders of the Schengen zone. We will stop illegal immigrants and unidentified masses migrating through the area.
“We are not saying that all immigrants are terrorists, but we do say that nobody can tell how many terrorists have come to Europe among the migrants and how many continue to arrive day by day. It is high time we focused on reality rather than on vague ideas with little to do with reality, because Europe’s people must be protected”.
Mr. Szijjártó said it was not Hungary’s, or Europe’s job to give migrants a new life on the continent, but rather to help them “get their old life back”.
Hungary became the subject of barbed attacks from other European nations in June when it announced the commencement of construction of a border barrier along their land frontier with Serbia as a reaction to the great influx of migrants transiting through the country north.
Comparisons were made with Nazi Germany and other historical human rights abuses, however criticism soon became more muted as the fence was completed and the migrant crisis intensified, causing social and economic problems in other European countries which Hungary had predicted, and moved to prevent in their own lands.
The border fence once completed was immediately effective, reducing daily illegal migrant incursions into the nation from 10,000 to 30 in the space of a week. Even nations which had once traded barbs with Hungary over the fence have started looking at establishing their own.