On Kossuth Radio’s Friday morning programme “180 Minutes”, Mr. Orbán said that he planned to visit as many places as possible in Europe over the next few weeks to forge alliances. If Hungary does not stand up for itself and does not protest against this proposal for a mandatory resettlement quota and it is adopted, then the question of who Hungarians must live alongside and what the ethnic composition of the country will be in future will not be decided in Hungary, but in Brussels, he highlighted.
He said that Europe should not concern itself with rewriting the Dublin Regulation, but instead the Schengen Agreement must be observed and the current Schengen rules must be supplemented with a few new ones, which Hungary is proposing. The Prime Minister said that the belief that the agreement with Turkey will solve something in the long run is a factual misunderstanding. The agreement with the Turks provides the answer to one problem: how to hold back the tide of people who are heading for Europe along the Western Balkan route, he said. He added that in the meantime Europe has a problem with the 1.5 million migrants who are already on the continent, and other migration routes are also expected to regain significance.
Our anti-terrorism capabilities must match those of Western countries
The Government’s proposed package of anti-terrorism measures would give Hungarian counter-terrorist organisations the same tools as Western countries, the Prime Minister said. A responsible opposition should be a partner in improving the country’s counter-terrorism capability, Mr. Orbán declared. According to the Prime Minister, the opposition has raised technical issues with regard to the Government’s proposed legislation, and although the Cabinet respects arguments in defence of human rights, they are, he believes, secondary when the lives of Hungarians are potentially endangered. Although the latest terrorist attack did not occur in Hungary, it was in fact directed against the European Union, and accordingly also against Hungary, he said. However, the opposition is not taking the threat seriously enough, he added.
Mr. Orbán also confirmed that the CIA has no knowledge of a possible terrorist attack against Hungary, contrary to a recent claim in the Polish media. In future, important information must be received by a joint intelligence centre, in order to enable the immediate recognition of possible correlations, he said. Accordingly the Prime Minister is urging for the establishment of such a centre. Mr. Orbán stressed that he does not want to see a return to how security agencies were used against the country’s own citizens under communism, but “in Europe today we are experiencing a security crisis”.
On the subject of difficulties concerning cooperation between the secret services of Member States, the Prime Minister said that the most important thing is that the parties inform each other immediately if they become aware of a possible act of terrorism in a partner country. We will need a coordination or consultation system, and the future sharing of information within a trust-based mechanism, he said. He also stressed that all intelligence of this nature must be taken seriously.
We must review the past year’s experiences
On Monday the Government was scheduled to review the past year’s experiences relating to the Act on the Prohibition of Work on Sundays, Mr. Orbán said; it will decide on further measures following extensive discussion. He added that a report will be made public which will include the position of trade unions and employers, and related data on whether retail sales have declined or business has shifted from larger retail centres to smaller ones.
The Government does not want to deprive people of the opportunity to spend Sundays at home with their families – or indeed deprive them of the right to work; but it would certainly not like the latter to be mandatory, he pointed out. Over the past year the Cabinet has been engaged in dialogue on how the principle of a free Sunday could be extended to other sectors, in addition to retail, he said.
The Prime Minister also said that Monday’s Cabinet meeting would include preliminary discussions on next years’ budget, the core philosophy of which will continue to be enabling everyone to take a step forward.