Hungary's border fence – Photo: wikipedia

Retvari: Hungary opposes EU’s ‘pro-migration proposal’

Hungary opposes the European Union's new migration crisis rules because they would "open a door, a newer opportunity for even more immigrants to arrive illegally in Europe", the state secretary of the ministry of interior said on Thursday.

Bence Retvari told a meeting of EU interior ministers in Brussels that approving the current proposal would determine the future of Europe, the composition of Europe’s residents, their security and economic competitiveness in the long term for several generations.

Hungary opposes the new “pro-migration proposal” by Brussels, he said.

The situation on the Italian island of Lampedusa was testament to the lack of effective external border protection in the EU, he added.

Key strategic EU issues such as the migration package should be decided based on consensus, Retvari said.

The proposed rules, he added, would act as a “magnet” for migrants, attracting even more people to arrive illegally. The proposal fails to handle the issue and reduce illegal migration, he added.

“Let’s preserve European security and European unity, and not approve regulations that would bring to Europe a more uncertain and dangerous world,” he said.

Retvari told the Hungarian press in Brussels that Hungary did not supporting the general, annual distribution of illegal migrants based on an automatic quota and did not approve ad-hoc decisions to distribute migrants among EU countries, either, in case there is a migration wave.

A permanent annual quota and ad-hoc immediate measures are both unacceptable to Hungary because they force countries to accept illegal migrants against their will, he said. Hungary’s position remains clear: the EU’s external borders must be protected, he added.

He said the last and “most radical” chapter in the migration package include crisis rules stating that in the case of a migratory situation being recognised as an emergency, masses of illegal migrants may be transferred from one member state to another.

This, he said, would facilitate a “migrant magnet” because illegal migrants would realise that if they arrive in Europe either in average numbers of in a large wave, there was a mechanism for receiving and distributing them among the member states, he said. “This is unacceptable to Hungary,” he added.

Only four countries considered it important enough to express their opinion on the crisis rules and the distribution of migrants according to a quota in an emergency situation: Germany and France argued in support, while Hungary and Poland expressed their opposition. Despite its being such an important issue, no other state expressed an opinion, he said, adding this indicated that, “behind the scenes”, member states were “under huge pressure”.

Decision-making forums in Europe, he said, were disregarding earlier rules, customs and European Council decisions, and forcing through their pro-migration proposals. At Thursday’s meeting, Brussels abused its powers by adopting crisis rules with a qualified majority instead of unanimous support, which the EU earlier said was needed for all decisions involving migration, he added.

“The EU has again gone against its own decision and has rewritten earlier decisions,” he said.

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