Gulyas accuses Left-wing opposition of ‘treason’
Concerning Hungary’s negotiations with the European Commission, Gergely Gulyas said because Brussels “has already applied double standards against the government in the past”, there had been no reason to believe “that this would suddenly change” after last year’s election.
Gulyas noted that the government had already been pre-financing projects that were meant to be covered by European Union funds, and this lowered the risk of the country being harmed by “Brussels’s behaviour”.
The operative programmes and Hungary’s post-pandemic recovery plan have already been approved and the aim now is to gain access to the funds as soon as possible, Gulyas said.
“This is no longer a legal issue, as Brussels has no grounds to raise any more concerns, and we’ve even found solutions to their arbitrary demands,” Gulyas said. “The final agreement is now strictly a political decision.”
“Brussels’s greatest flaw today is that the European Commission is no longer the guardian of the treaties, as stipulated in the Treaty of Lisbon, and community law is not the guiding principle in the commission’s actions concerning Hungary,” he said. “We’re talking about an international organisation where the fundamental principles of the rule of law do not apply.”
Gulyas said Hungary and the EC were “very close” to reaching an agreement on the issue around the judiciary. Other areas may involve prolonged debates, but disagreements over the child protection law and migration are not comprehensive conditions that would result in the entirety of Hungary’s funding being blocked.
As regards the war in Ukraine, Gulyas said Hungary was currently alone in calling for peace, adding that he expected “common sense to prevail sooner or later”. This, he added, meant preventing the war from expanding, “because then this could easily escalate into a world war”.
Hungary does not dispute Ukraine’s right to self-defence and respects the troops fighting to defend their homeland, “but there has to be a limit to the European support of self-defence, because we can’t risk the threat of a world war”, he said.
Meanwhile, Gulyas said that since the current government has been in power, Hungary has been in rational cooperation with Russia mainly on energy, which prioritised the procurement of energy sources that are vital for the economy to function. Hungary has to put its own interests first, which in this case means securing options for energy imports, he said. And though the government has done a lot to diversify the country’s energy sources since 2010, Hungary’s oil and gas supply today would not be secure without Russia, he added.
Asked about the left-wing opposition’s foreign campaign donations, Gulyas said the use of foreign funds for election campaigns had already been illegal under Hungarian law. “The political product offered by the left wing in Hungary today is treason,” he said.
“They’re not free and they’re not independent because they’ve been bought off and they don’t represent Hungarian interests because their buyers are foreigners,” he added.
Gulyas said the left had clout outside Hungary, “where their supporters and donors live, and where they can report the country”. But in Hungary, even those who do not support the government are disappointed in and dissatisfied with the opposition, he said.
The majority of honest left-wing voters do not think that election campaigns in Hungary should be run on American money, Gulyas added.