Hungarian Government: Brussels is afraid of the 2 October referendum
OREANDA-NEWS. According to the Cabinet Office of the Prime Minister’s Parliamentary State Secretary, Brussels is afraid of the 2 October referendum and is doing everything possible to undermine the referendum; they are “behaving sneakily” and applying continuous pressure.
At a press conference in Budapest on Thursday, Csaba Dömötör stressed: “The statements from Brussels that attack the institution of national referendums are especially shocking”, adding that the referendum is one of the fundamental institutions of democracy “and accordingly we call on every EU politician to refrain from trying to protect Europe from its own citizens and finally start taking into account their fears”.
According to Mr. Dömötör, the referendum could have a reinforcing effect on Europe. “We would like a Europe that is capable of protecting its communities and culture, and is capable of maintaining security in the interests of its citizens”, he said.
“Brussels has already made its decision on the quota package; if it were up to them then there would be a compulsory distribution procedure among the Member States and fines would also be imposed on those who do not want to take part, in addition to which family reunifications would also be made easier”, he said, adding that “Now it is up to the Member States, who can prevent these decisions from coming into force”.
Concerning European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker’s annual State of the Union speech on Wednesday, the State Secretary highlighted the fact that Mr. Juncker had asked the Slovakian EU Presidency to urge Member States to show more solidarity with regard to the distribution of immigrants. He also pointed out that the EP President had previously stated that the Commission would like to set up a mechanism for distributing immigrants that would activate automatically in urgent cases. According to Mr. Dömötör, this clearly shows that Brussels is still forcing the quota package.
“It is Hungary’s priority interest for Brussels to retract every element of the quota package”, the Parliamentary State Secretary declared, according to whom this will only happen if the referendum has a high turnout.
According to Mr. Dömötör, in addition to various statements Brussels is also using other instruments to apply pressure such as threatening to fine countries that do not want to participate in the resettlement programme. In the case of the 78 million forint fine, not only is the level of the fine outrageous, but so is the fact that it was put forward at all, he stressed.
With relation to the fact that it has been suggested that Brussels might reduce development funding for Central and Eastern European countries that do not want to implement the quota package, the State Secretary said “We would like to make it absolutely clear that we do not regard EU funding as some kind of benevolent handout, but as compensation for the fact that Hungary opened up its markets as part of joining the European Union”.