Hungarian PM defiant after European Parliament's criticism

Source: Xinhua| 2017-05-19 19:33:52|Editor: liuxin
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BUDAPEST, May 19 (Xinhua) -- The attacks from Brussels will not divert the Hungarian government from its objectives, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said Friday on public radio MR1, two days after a formal condemnation from the European Parliament.

On Wednesday, the European Parliament condemned a "serious deterioration of the rule of law, democracy and fundamental rights" in Hungary and called for a process that could hypothetically lead to European Union (EU) sanctions against Budapest.

While sanctions are extensively regarded as unlikely, the vote shows how irritated MEPs from all parties have become with Prime Minister Orban's government -- especially with its anti-migrant policies, its campaign against the EU, and Budapest's Central European University, not to mention several bills and laws aimed against NGOs receiving foreign grants.

"Migration can be found behind all of the attacks against Hungary, everything else is meaningless, as there is a European community of interests, crossing party lines, that wants to settle several hundred thousands of aliens in Europe: the mastermind behind that idea is George Soros, who also partially is financing this concept," Orban said.

"We have to abide by the Hungarian national interests, we are not to be told who we want to live with," he said.

The Hungarian leader expressed his disappointment at the lack of respect shown from EU bureaucrats towards nation states. "Europe's essence cannot be found in Brussels, but in Warsaw, Budapest, Paris, Berlin or Rome," he stressed.

However, he also made clear that if the end of the procedures would lead to a debate at the European Court of Justice of the EU, Hungary would accept its ruling.

"Hungary is going to walk its own path, and is not going to let Brussels decide on Hungarian energy prices or tax rates," he added.

Orban also spoke of the importance of protecting his country's economic policies, based on the increase of salaries and on low taxes. "If we can achieve that, the Hungarian GDP might get over 5 percent around 2020," Orban underlined.

The Hungarian government has not only been criticized lately by Brussels, but also on the domestic front. Many demonstrations have been held last month, drawing several thousand of pro-EU protesters to the streets. The next big rally against Orban is to take place on Sunday evening in the Hungarian capital.