Fresh from a decisive victory in his referendum on mass migration to Europe, Hungarian leader Viktor Orban has welcomed journalists and politicians to observe the national counter-terror police’s response to a mock attack, in which heavily armed men assaulted a transport hub.
Motivated by a series of Islamist terror attacks against European capitals and the heavily armed, highly trained specialist police needed to combat modern threats Mr. Orban has overseen a programme of updating Hungary’s counter-terror police.
Addressing officers, journalists, and politicians Mr. Orban said: “The goal we set out is that if a young Hungarian carries out the hard work of counter-terrorism — for which we are grateful — then there should be no difference in his equipment, safety, supplies, and pay, compared to an American, German, or an Austrian colleague.
“Today, Hungary is a country strong enough to provide the same security equipment, and the same attention to its soldiers, policemen, and counter-terrorism units, that any other developed Western-European country does.
“The most shocking thing in all that we have seen here is the shortage of time [available to first responders]. I can imagine how hard it is to prepare for this, given the last bombing on Teréz Körút — if our minister of Interior calculated properly based on the recordings — happened in eight seconds and you have to prepare for years because you might have to defend against an eight-second action”.
Mr. Orban’s reference to the explosion at Teréz Körút (Teresa Boulevard) on September 24th during the counter-terror exercise may generate some interest, given how little is known about the event and the motivation behind it. Hungary has not experienced the same wave of crime linked to mass-migration that other European nations have, and has not been a target for terror attacks.
Hungarian police are presently hunting the suspect, seen carrying a rucksack which is believed to have contained explosives, before the blast which injured two and damaged nearby buildings.
Despite that, the nature of potential future terror attacks the Hungarian government anticipated was clear from the exercise. Attacking a bus and metro interchange, the police actors playing terrorists carried AK-style rifles, attempted to behead civilians, and can be heard shouting “Allahu Akhbar” in the Hungarian government’s promotional video.
On a personal note the Hungarian leader remarked as the exercise came to a close ad he addressed the police officers who took part: “I wish you every success and good health. If you have a family, please be so kind and pass on my best wishes to your family members”.