- Title: Hungary urges EU dialogue with Turkey to prevent new wave of migrants
- Date: 10th October 2019
- Summary: BUDAPEST, HUNGARY (OCTOBER 10, 2019) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Hungarian) HUNGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTER, PETER SZIJJARTO, SAYING: "So we are ready to receive gas from alternative sources. The problem is that our allies have not done their homeworks, you know. So I understand that there will be many rumours, many bashings, many accusations when the Russian President (Vladimir Putin) comes but I can pose the question to our allies what they have done in favour of diversification in this region or especially regarding Hungary. Currently, because of physics and because of infrastructure and because of lack of the completion of the homeworks of our allies, we can only rely on the Russian sources when it comes to gas." SZIJJARTO SPEAKING (SOUNDBITE) (Hungarian) HUNGARIAN FOREIGN MINISTER, PETER SZIJJARTO, SAYING: "We have not vetoed yet (extending sanctions imposed on Russia after it seized Crimea from Ukraine), we will not veto it. We have to live with the fact that French-Russian trade has increased by 41% during the last 3 years, Germany-Russia trade has increased by 20% during the last 3 years, and we lost eight and a half billion dollars of export opportunities since the sanctions have been in place. We have to live with that, very hypocritical situation but we will never break the unity of the European Union." EU AND HUNGARIAN FLAGS ON FOREIGN MINISTRY FACADE EXTERIOR OF FOREIGN MINISTRY VIEW OF PARLIAMENT AND DANUBE BRIDGES AND SHIPS ON DANUBE
- Embargoed: 24th October 2019 20:28
- Keywords: Hungary Peter Szijjarto Turkey Syria conflict migration gas Russian gas EU
- Location: BUDAPEST AND KISKUNDOROZSMA, HUNGARY
- City: BUDAPEST AND KISKUNDOROZSMA, HUNGARY
- Country: Hungary
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace
- Reuters ID: LVA003B0IOABD
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: The European Union should have a dialogue with Turkey despite Ankara's offensive on Kurdish-led forces in Syria, in order to avoid a fresh wave of migrants coming to Europe, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said on Thursday (October 10).
Turkish troops and their Syrian rebel allies pushed further into Syrian territory on Thursday, opening up a new front in the Syrian civil war and exposing Europe's inability to influence the direction of the conflict.
The EU relies on Turkey to curb the arrival of refugees into Europe following a 2016 agreement to seal off the Aegean route after more than 1 million people entered the bloc. Turkey, which hosts 3.6 million Syrian refugees, threatened to "open the gates" to allow those already in the country to head for Europe unless it receives support for its plans.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, in power for nearly a decade, has often been at loggerheads with Brussels, for example over his refusal to take in migrants under an EU quota scheme and his efforts to tighten control over the media, and academic institutions.
Under Orban, Hungary also pursues what he has hailed as good pragmatic relations with Russia. President Vladimir Putin is due to visit Budapest later this month.
Szijjarto said the main issue on the agenda will be energy, with Hungary still reliant on Russia for the natural gas it needs, as diversification of supply was still not possible in Central Europe due to a lack of alternative sources and pipelines.
When asked by Reuters reporters where Hungary would stand if the EU decided at the end of 2019 to extend sanctions against Russia that were imposed on Moscow after its seizure of Crimea from Ukraine, Szijjarto said that they had would not break the unity of the European Union.
(Production: Kriszta Fenyo, Louisa Naks)
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