Orban promises to stand by Poland
Hungary’s nationalist Prime Minister Viktor Orban has vowed to defend Poland from EU sanctions over its attempts to purge the Polish Supreme Court, deepening an east-west split within the bloc.
Orban, who will seek a fourth term in April next year, said the Hungarian opposition was no match for his Fidesz government.
“In the upcoming campaign, first of all we have to confront external powers,” Orban told a cultural festival in Baile Tusnad, Romania.
“We have to stand our ground against the Soros mafia network and the Brussels bureaucrats.
“And, during the next nine months, we will have to fight against the media they operate.”
Orban said “Hungarian interests” would be the “guiding star” of his foreign policy, not “Trump, Putin or Merkel”.
The prime minister said Hungary’s low birth rate made the country an “endangered species” and that the government was using taxes on multinationals to fund social policies that would encourage families to have more children.
Orban called the probe by Frans Timmermans, EU Commission’s vice president, an “inquisition” into a Polish draft law to replace its leading judges with appointees selected by the president.
Timmermans said the commission considering using unprecedented EU sanctions in response to the bill. “The inquisition today is focusing on the dismantling of Poland,” the increasingly authoritarian Orban said. “Timmermans is the chief inquisitor, now he’s attacking Poland.”
Orban was addressing thousands of supporters of his Fidesz party in rural Transylvania, which was part of Hungary before being handed to Romania in Paris peace treaties after the First World War. “Hungary is of course advancing its own interests, because of this and because of our friendship, the inquisition’s attack on Poland will never succeed; we will always bear solidarity with the Poles,” Orban told the crowd.
He added that there was an “alliance against the people” was being organised by the EU to bring more than a million Muslim migrants to Europe each year. “This alliance includes the bureaucrats and we may call it the [Hungarian-born billionaire philanthropist George] Soros empire.” Warsaw’s reforms mirror changes introduced by Orban in 2013 which replaced judges with Fidesz loyalists.
Timmermans has warned that Brussels may move to invoke the EU’s most serious political sanctions against Poland.
Hunyad Castle, Transylvania. Picture credit: Flickr