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Tags: EU | Hungary | Orban

Hungary's Orban Says Illegal Immigration Threatens Europe

Saturday, 25 July 2015 07:05 AM

BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — Illegal immigration is a threat to Hungary and all of Europe, with the biggest risk coming from hundreds of millions of people from the "depths of Africa" looking to escape poverty, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said Saturday.

Orban accused the European Union of failing to defend its citizens from the "masses of illegal immigrants," who he said threatened the cultural identity of European countries and contributed to increased terrorism, unemployment and criminality.

"For us, today Europe is at stake," Orban said. "The survival, disappearance or, more precisely, the transformation beyond recognition of the European citizen's lifestyle, European values and the European nations."

"The question now is not only what kind of Europe we Hungarians would like to live in," Orban said, "Rather, will all that we now call Europe exist at all?"

So far this year, over 90,000 migrants and refugees have reached Hungary, which is building a fence on its border with Serbia to stem the flow. Most refugees request asylum in Hungary but quickly leave for other destinations in the EU like Germany or Sweden before their cases are settled.

"The really serious threats are arriving not from the war zones ... but from the depths of Africa," Orban said. "Northern Africa today can no longer defend Europe from the immense masses of people."

Orban spoke to mostly young supporters at the same cultural festival where a year ago he outlined plans to convert Hungary into an "illiberal state" such as Russia, China and Singapore. That idea, as well as his accusations that civic groups critical of his government were working for foreign interests, drew widespread criticism, including from President Barack Obama.

This time, Orban lashed out mainly against the EU leadership in Brussels and left-wing ideology, accusing them of willfully supporting immigration to weaken Europe's individual nations and their unique cultures.

"The European left sees the problem of immigration not as a source of danger but as an opportunity," Orban said. "They believe ... that the escalation of immigration can extremely weaken or even eliminate the national structures."

© Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Europe
Illegal immigration is a threat to Hungary and all of Europe, with the biggest risk coming from hundreds of millions of people from the "depths of Africa" looking to escape poverty, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said Saturday.Orban accused the...
EU,Hungary,Orban
345
2015-05-25
Saturday, 25 July 2015 07:05 AM
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