Nemeth: Vaccination, borders ‘not political issues’

Vaccinations and border reopenings are issues for epidemiologists to decide and are not political questions, Zsolt Nemeth, the head of parliament's foreign affairs committee, said in an interview published by Russian daily Izvestia on Tuesday.

Nemeth said Hungary could not have conducted a successful drive without Russian and Chinese vaccines.

“Vaccination cannot be considered an ideological issue,” he said. “Any politician looking at it geopolitically exposes their compatriots to a great risk.”

Answering a question concerning Hungary-Russia ties, Nemeth said Hungary, a country situated between Germany and Russia, “knows that it had better be on good terms with both”, adding that it was “important that both those countries should be interested in a prosperous [central European] region”.

“It follows that our policies are focused on cooperation, primarily in commerce, but also in such areas as culture,” he said.

“The EU has a different approach to Russia, rooted in the misbelief that the EU has grown to be a global player,” he said.

He also slammed “some politicians” who “maintain a campaign against Russia to promote their own domestic goals.”

Answering a question about energy, Nemeth said Russia “has been a reliable gas supplier”, while “we have had excellent experiences in nuclear energy, too”. He insisted that Paks, in central Hungary, will see “a modern, Russian reactor” built, adding that “nuclear energy is a clean and modern source of electricity” despite its loss of popularity in some western European countries.

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