Russia Partners with Hungary to Aid Syrian Christians

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ATTILA KISBENEDEK/AFP/Getty Images

Russia and Hungary have agreed to jointly rebuild a monastery in Syria, along with financing a large bakery to provide bread for a whole city, Hungarian foreign minister Peter Szijjarto told public radio on Sunday.

Making reference to a recent visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin to Budapest, Mr. Szijjarto said that Hungary has sought to build cooperation with Russia to protect Christian communities, which he described as “a very serious, tense, international and political” issue.

Both Hungary and Russia have invested extensive resources to ensure the protection of Christians, he said, adding that protecting Christian culture is a top priority for the two nations.

In June 2018, Szijjarto told Breitbart News that the Hungarian government openly reaches out to persecuted Christian communities around the world because “we are a Christian country.”

“We are a Christian country and we have to emphasize that because currently, under a mainstream liberal media, if you say so you must be very brave,” he said.

“That’s why, very proudly, I want to say again that we are a Christian country and that’s why we have a special responsibility to protect our Christians brothers and sisters all around the world,” he continued. “If we don’t protect them, who will protect them? If you don’t speak in favor of them, who will speak in favor of them?”

Hungary has been pressured by the European Union to take in more migrants, but the government of Viktor Orbán has pushed back, insisting that they prefer to provide assistance to people where they are rather than bringing them into Hungary.

“We give them financial assistance to be able to get stronger where they have been living. We build schools,” Szijjarto told Breitbart. “We take part in covering medical costs of their hospitals. We rebuild their torn down houses. We give them scholarships.”

“So, we try to strengthen where they are. You know, they usually ask us [to not encourage] members of the Christian communities to leave their homes. They ask us to help them stay where they have been living for centuries, basically, or even more, and to be stronger there. That’s why we [would] rather help them to get stronger in the places where they have been originally living,” he said.

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