Hungarian Foreign Minister: We Are Fed Up With 'Politically Correct, Hypocritical' European Union
- In an unprecedented move,
the European Union voted in September
to strip Hungary of its voting rights
for allegedly undercutting democracy.
Although the vote was largely symbolic,
it showed the wide gulfover several issues
between the western Europeanpoliticians in Brussels
and the fiercely independent government
of Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
Hungary has been treated likea pariah in the western media
over its position on open borders.
But Hungary's leadersare smart enough to know
that their national values
will never please the global left.
In New York, I interviewed Hungary's
defiant foreign minister, Peter Szijjarto,
who insists Hungary will remaina sovereign Christian nation
which rejects any foreign interference,
especially when it comes to its borders
and migrants from the Muslim world.
Mr. Foreign Minister,what is Hungary's response
to the EU decision to punish Hungary
over its immigration policy?
- Well basically, it's a revenge
what the EuropeanParliament has decided upon.
European Parliament has a majority of MEPs
who are pro-migration,absolutely pro-migration,
and since the Hungarian government
has proven in the lastthree and a half years
that migration is a negative phenomenon,
migration is dangerous,
and migration can and must be stopped,
this annoys the majority
of the members of the European Parliament,
this annoys the bureaucrats in Brussels,
this annoys the European Commission,
so they made a revenge on Hungary.
Illegal migration is themost serious challenge
European Union has ever hadto face since its foundation.
Illegal migration is anabsolutely dangerous phenomenon.
Look at Europe.
One and a half million people could enter
the territory of the European Union
in an absolutely uncontrolled way.
No one knew who they were.
And since the illegalmigration has started,
33 major terrorist attackshave been committed
on the territory of the European Union
by persons with a migratory background.
We are fed up with the politically correct
and hypocritic approachof the European Union.
We are fed up with thosepoliticians who say
that terrorism is partof metropolitan life.
No, it's not.
We have to fight against terrorism
and we have to tackle theroot causes of terrorism,
and one of the root causes of terrorism
is the illegal migration.
- How can Hungary continuein an organization
where the gap betweenthese two views is so wide?
- Hungary is interested ina strong European Union.
But in order to get there,we have a lot of debates.
The bad news is that some ofour western European friends
question our right to have a debate.
And we don't agree with those ones
who represent a kind offederalistic approach
which suggests that aUnited States of Europe
should be established.
Our position is different.
We want a strong European Union
based on strong member states.
We don't like the approach
which is represented bysome forces in Europe
which would like to step European Union
into a post-national,post-Christian period.
We want a European Union
which cares about the national identity,
where the countries and the nations
are proud of their heritage,about their identity,
about their history.
So the nihilism, the valuelessapproach which is there
is simply unacceptable for us.
If Europe is not goingto find the way back
to the Christian rootsand Christian heritage,
then Europe will not be strong again.
That's our vision here.
- How has Hungary's history,explain this to Americans,
how Hungary's historyinforms and influences
its immigration policy today.
- Well, you know, Hungarianpeople are freedom fighters.
We had to fight for our freedom
throughout our history many times.
In the 1956 revolution,
when we fought against the Communists.
Or we can remember from the history books
a long period of time when theOsmans have occupied Hungary.
So we had to fight for freedomso many times in our history
that we really, really respect
and we really can valuefreedom and liberty.
So that's why we will alwaysstick to preserve our rights
to make a decision on our own
whom we allow to come tothe territory of Hungary,
whom we do not allow to do so.
We will never give up ourright to make a decision
with whom we would like tolive together in our country.
We will never give up our right
to stick to our culture and heritage.
We have been a Christiancountry for a millennium.
Why should we give it up?
Who is the one who can judge,
over judge the Hungarian history
and the will of the Hungarian people?
- The western media makes it appear
that you're building a dictatorship.
- You have to count with the fact
that the western media,the mainstream media,
hates what we are doingbecause this is the same way
they behaved during the election campaign
here in the United States.
You know, I think it was a bigshock for mainstream media,
both in US and in Europe, to understand
that it is not them to pick the President
of the United States.
It's the American peoplewho made the vote.
And in Hungary, it was notthe NGOs funded by Soros,
it was not the European Commission,
it was not the mainstream,liberal, western media,
but the Hungarian peopleto make the decision
about the future of the country,
and that must be respected.
But these representatives of media
are so frustrated with that,
that people don't thinkthe same way that they do,
that they commit any kind of actions
against governments whichare not representing
the same mainstream line than they do.
- You must feel like you havean ally in President Trump.
- I always try to avoid commenting
internal issues of other countries,
but if you ask me, Ithink democracy has won
when President Trumpturned out to be the winner
because there were so many
and so much influence against him,
We have seen on mainstreammedia, on posters,
and political researchers, everybody.
And then American people cameout and voted in favor of him.
Look, from a Hungarian perspective,
I can tell you that his administration
is much more favorablecompared to the former one.
Under President Obama'sDemocrat administration,
there were direct and open attempts
to interfere into our domestic issues,
open attempts to throw out the government,
open attempts to createchallenges and problems.
Our relationship duringthe Democrat administration
was extremely poor andnow it's picking up,
it's much better.
We understand, we sharethe same kind of issues
when it comes to border protection,
when it comes to migration,
when it comes to preservingthe Christian values,
and it's good to know.
- I want to talk to youabout the importance
of Christianity to Hungary.
First, though, about immigrants.
Why does it matter if an immigrant
who wants to enter Hungaryis a Christian or a Muslim?
- You know, we have this debate in Europe
whether multiculturalismis, by definition,
better than a homogeneous country.
And Hungarians had avery clear say on that.
We want to keep Hungaryas a Hungarian country.
We want to keep Hungaryas a Christian country
according to the roots and heritage.
And look at the western part of Europe.
Terrorist societies have been created,
which is always a source for tensions,
for violence, for security risks,
and this has been going onin western part of Europe.
Come on, how it ispossible, how it is possible
that in Europe, in thewestern part of Europe,
decisions are about to remove the symbols
of Christian heritage or Christian faith
from public areas?
We don't want that.
I mean we want to preserveour heritage, our culture.
We are a very family oriented nation.
You know, in the constitution,we speak very clearly
that marriage is an institutionbetween a man and a woman.
We have received enormous attacks on that,
saying that we are retrograde,
we don't understand modern developments,
but we stick to it.
We stick to the traditionaldefinition of a family
and the traditionaldefinition of marriage.
- And you care about persecuted Christians
in other countries.
Tell us about this.
- You know, we have to understandthat Christianity became
the most persecuted religion on earth.
We have to stand up for the rights
of the Christian communitiesall over the world.
We have established aseparate state secretariat
in our government which only has one duty,
to monitor the situation and the destiny
of the Christian communitiesall around the world.
And if any of them is in need,
if any of them is under attack,then let's help immediately.
So very recently, we havespent 15 million euros
on the reconstructionprograms in the Middle East
to reconstruct housesof Christian families
who had to leave from their homes,
to reconstruct and rebuild churches.
Now we are rebuilding40 Christian churches
in Lebanon, for example,
and this is the policy we have to follow.
- Foreign Minister Szijjarto,thank you for talking to us.
- Thank you for the opportunity.