Hungary has started to put into practice an agreement brokered in 2015 in Tehran during the visit of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán to Iran which outlines constructing a mini-nuclear plant with scientific and educational purposes, said János Lázár on Thursday. The Hungarian official responded to the questions posed by reporters that whether the agreement is within the framework of Iran-5+1 agreement and told the media that the agreement was brokered in Tehran in 2015 after Iran and 5+1 signed the nuclear deal in Vienna. Meanwhile the Spokesman for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Behrouz Kamalvandi announced that a new cooperation document will be signed between Iran and Hungary in the future meeting of the head of AEOI and Hungarian deputy PM. Following the landmark agreement between Iran and 5+1, signed in Vienna on July 2015, the international cooperation on developing Iran’s peaceful nuclear program has significantly hiked.
The court in Strasbourg has recognized Hungary guilty of illegally restraining two asylum seekers from Bangladesh in a transit area on the border with Serbia. This decision could have an impact on Hungarian policy on migrants which provides for the automatic detention in the camps for all asylum seekers.
The second phase of EUNAVFOR MED, “Sofia”, started in October. It takes name from a Somali child born during a critic journey in the Mediterranean and rescued by a German ship last August.
The project aims to stop the trafficking of human beings intercepting smugglers in the sea. The monitoring of international waters, aims to search, control and seize suspicious craft, and it is entrusted to military ships, helicopters and drones. All this, within the framework of the objectives set in July by the European Union to stem the crisis of migrants in the Mediterranean: identification, arrest and destruction of boats and means used by traffickers.
Currently, six European warships are engaged offshore Libya: an Italian one, an English one, a French one, a Spanish one and two German, but later this month three other means should be made available from England, Belgium and Slovenia. Four helicopters, many drones and 1300 military will be added to these.
According to Admiral Enrico Credendino, head of mission, “the order is enforcing law by the use of force, to dislocate traffickers’ business. While the first phase aimed to find the necessary information about transnational criminal network, the second phase provides for the boarding of vessels, their inspection, the reception of migrants, the arrest of traffickers and the destruction of their boats. All this, however, within international waters, 12 nautical miles away from the Libyan coast. We need a United Nations decision and an invitation from Libyan government to operate directly in the territorial waters. The third next phase would allow the temporary landing on the ground for the destruction of smugglers’ structures “.
This last phase, which hasn’t yet received the green light of the EU, would actually be the most effective, since it is in Libyan waters that most of the smugglers operate, but – as the Italian Foreign minister Paolo Gentiloni says – ”UN Security Council can’t authorize this intervention without the express request of Libya “.
14 European countries are participating in EUNAVFOR MED: Italy, UK, Germany, France, Spain, Slovenia, Greece, Luxembourg, Belgium, Finland, Hungary, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Sweden. The costs of military intervention – apart from an annually European contribution of 12 million Euros – are supported by the individual participating countries. Italy has contributed to the mission with a budget of 26 million euro and 1.020 soldiers.
Western countries vote yes to the redistribution of 120,000 refugees arrived in Italy and Greece, which will make more efficient their identification centers by November. Obstructionism from Eastern States. Yes to raid the smugglers within October, too.
Go-ahead to the plan to share 120,000 refugees, the creation of hotspots by November, the raid against smugglers. Between 22 and 24 September, during the Eu ministers extraordinary meeting
and European Council, European Commission guidelines proposals on immigration were welcomed. As predictalbe, the deployment of Eastern Europe (“Visegrad”), consisting of Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic and Slovakia over Romania, voted against the allocation of refugees.
Indeed, on the distribution of 120,000 refugees arrived in Italy and Greece, it’s necessary the qualifying majority. In return, the two Mediterranean states have to reorganize identification centers, which should be ready by November, as decided by European Council.
The aim is the streamlining for those who do not hold the right of asylum and to make easier the sorting of all those who have the necessary qualifications. It’s a measure of historical value because it deletes the Eu laws of the Treaty of Dublin which allowed to refugee to be located only in the State where he has asked for asylum.
Then, the European Council has said yes to the raid against the smugglers from Libya. This naval operation, active since October 7, is included among EUNAVFOR second phase and provides the boarding, the search and the seizure of boats.
Small step forward in relations with international organizations and neighboring countries, too. The EU has prepared a rescue plan of 1 billion euro in favor of the UN agencies for refugees. While, about trust funds, Europe has asked Member States for greater effort, given that those funds for countries in crisis, as Syria and Iraq, are not enough.
These choices are positively welcomed by a part of Europe. From the Eu institutions, until Italy, France and Germany. Indeed, Chancellor Angela Merkel has talked about a “decisive step forward”.
Statements which was followed by certainly not conciliatory replication of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who has shouted with “moralism imperialist”. These words highlight climate among Eastern Europe leaders. As in the case of Slovak Prime Minister Robert Fico, who, representing the Visegrad Group, has announced a lawsuit against allocation of refugees regulations.
But Hungarian behavior is even more underlining this rift between West and East. After the anti-immigration laws and the building of the wall on the border with Serbia, the government has announced its intention to raise additional barrier on the border with Croatia. News that, adding to the thousands of refugees arrived in Serbia, are bringing ancient grievances between Belgrade and Zagreb to light.
On migration policies, as already demonstrated on the economic front, Europe is traveling at double speed. In this case, the gap between West and East is rooted in the modern and contemporary European history. More than Communism, the Eastern States, as evidenced by more international sources, are opposed to foreign people because their real independence has recently been achieved and spilled blood for their homeland is still present. This gap between the two areas of the European Union underlines how a real continental unity is still far.
The hungarian government is building on Hungary-Serbia border a 4 m high and 175 km long fence in order to keep away the mounting influx of asylum-seekers, best known as “livelihood immigrants”. Hungarian institutions are running an obstinate and unfriendly policy on immigration issue. This provocative and hostile way of facing the situation reflects its pressure by changing asylum rules quite often recently. Billboards on Hungarian highways and buildings carry messages reading, “If you come to Hungary, you must respect our laws,” or “If you come to Hungary, do not take Hungarians’ jobs!” and so on. Are this slogans printed in arabic? Of course they aren’t: they’re printed in hungarian only, which cleares the meaning of what the government is expecting to achieve by hungarian locals.
Thus, immigrants, asylum seekers wich enter in hungarian territory from the Balkans, should expect to face the rejection of their requests in Hungary. The government has actually introduced a number of restrictive amendments which would expand the scope of “asylum detention”, accelerate asylum procedures so that a final decision could be taken within a few days, and limit the possibility to appeal. The regulation deprives virtually all applicants of individual assessment and fair procedure and thus puts tens of thousands at risk. As Amnesty International points out, Hunagry, definitely, dodges its obligations under national and international law to assist asylum-seekers.
Hungarian’s 175 km long border with Serbia facilitates human smuggling via land routes from the south and an enormous pressure on its reception infrastructure (financed by and large by EU funds). With 42, 000 applicants registered last year, Hungary was the recipient of the second largest amount of asylum claims per capita. So far this year the influx has already surpassed 80, 000, a number that rockets the country to the top of the EU list. And whereas in 2014 almost half of all irregular migrants came from Kosovo, around 80 per cent of this year’s migrants flee from war-torn countries like Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.
On May 19, Prime Minister, Victor Orban, roared his disappointment on EU’s allegedly permissive refugee policies, calling the Commission’s quota plan “idiotic and falsely”, by “depriving Hungary of the right to protect its national borders”. As a result, the European Council proclaimed the country a special case and the subsequent Justice and Home Affairs council in July accepted that Hungary – as the one and only member state – does not take part in any one of the EU’s newly established relocation and resettlement mechanisms.
A large scale public campaign, the “National Consultation on Migration and Terrorism” was launched and sent to 8 million Hungarians. Two notions, “migration” and “terrorism” arranged to create a dangerous, a hate-policy combine, supported by the idea of migrants that are grabing huangarian’s jobs. UN High Commission for Human Rights and the Council of Europe expressed grave concerns about the far right populist trend in the Hungarian immigration debate.
Now, for truth sake, asylum seekers in Hungary, quite the 80 per cent of them, consider to leave the country once they receive an affermative response. Durin 2014, only 9 per cent of all cases were concluded by granting refugee status or subsidiary protection. (For comparison it was 35 per cent in the UK and 40 in Germany). Thus, what for is all this yelling about? Is this just some clear, and poor demagogic propaganda? Is Orban trying to gain some easy achievement using immigration emergency all across european countries?
What’s left to be said? Memory worths it all: hungarian revolution in 1956 created a wave of 200,000 immigrants who gained the respect, the solidarity and the welcome of other countries and people from all over the world. Ironic that in the country that helped bring about the fall of the Berlin Wall by removing its western barriers along the Austrian border in 1989, the idea of this outrageous fence is highly divisive and a symbol of rising worries across Europe about the country’s political future.