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Official: Hungary protecting Europe by helping Sahel

Europe would face ruin if migration from Africa's Sahel region took off, a government official said in a newspaper interview.
11. August 2023 8:20

Referring to the unstable situation in Niger, Eduard Laszlo Mathe, ministerial commissioner for government policy in sub-Sahara, told the weekly Mandiner that problems must be handled locally rather than giving in to “endless African migration”, and the Hungarian government had been the first in Europe to recognise this.

The Sahel, he added, was the security frontier of Europe, and potentially tens of millions of African migrants may head to Europe.

During its presidency of the European Union in 2024, Hungary will highlight the problems associated with the countries of the Sahel that have a combined population of 90 million, both nomadic and settled peoples, he said.

These countries with growing populations, he added, were highly vulnerable to climate change and food poverty.

Recently, a government delegation visited Chad and examined possible outcomes of the refugee crisis now developing on the Chad-Sudan border, including a humanitarian crisis due to the Sudanese civil war.

He said the problems of both Africa could soon become the problems of the EU.

Hungary, the state secretary added, has started to build strong relations with Niger and Chad, and it offered humanitarian relief in the hope of stabilising the region’s economies with a further view to protecting Europe.

Mathe said Hungary, with its long-standing attention to the dangers inherent in north Africa, had been among the first to react to the coup in Niger, and its Western partners appreciated it engagement.

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