Bence Tuzson - Photo: MTI

Justice minister: Future direction of Europe at stake in EP elections

One of the most important questions at stake in next year's European Parliament elections is what direction Europe will choose, Justice Minister Bence Tuzson said in Subotica (Szabadka), in northern Serbia, on Saturday.

The question concerning the European Union’s future, he said, was whether it would become a federal Europe, with its nations “dissolving into a single mass”, or a Europe built on strong nations.

The Hungarian government is convinced that it is only possible to build a Europe based on strong nations, Tuzson said, adding that the EU’s founding fathers had envisioned the same kind of Europe.

“So we aren’t talking about a European empire that can issue diktats to nations . but rather a Europe based on cooperation,” the minister said. He said the EU’s member states all had their own interests and legal systems which could not be overwritten “from one moment to the next”. “These nations can’t be commanded to act against their interests, because then these countries won’t obey those instructions,” he said.

Hungary’s interest lies in continuing cooperation in Europe and for the Europe built on strong nations to keep getting stronger, he said, warning that “diktats” issued to member states would tear the bloc apart.

Tuzson said more and more member states considered the issue of sovereignty important because there were more and more cases of certain decisions violating their own sovereignty.

Concerning judicial cooperation between Hungary and Serbia, Tuzson said Budapest had a lot of valuable experience that could be of help to Serbia on its path to European integration. He said more bilateral agreements would be needed to further strengthen the two countries’ judicial relations.

Tuzson said that in order for the region to boost its competitiveness, it must also become more competitive in the area of the law. Besides meeting the criteria that lead to EU membership, Serbia, as an EU member, will have to contribute to a set of regulations that can boost this competitiveness, the minister said.

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