Entries RSS Feed Share Send to Facebook Tweet This Accessible version

Hungary cannot resist the migrant wave

August 27th, 2015

As more and more migrants are swirling though Hungary’s increasingly fortified border with Serbia, a prestigious analyst asks whether Hungary is still a state, if it is unable to control its own borders.

On his popular Facebook page, political scientist Gábor Török admits that debates over how to consider the masses of migrants from Asia are both important and legitimate. Some loathe the new arrivals, while others like them, and others still are indifferent – each standpoint can be defended, he suggests. But one important question needs to be answered, he believes. A question which at first glance appears merely theoretical, but is becoming more and more applicable day by day. Namely, whether  a country which is unable to control who is crossing its borders can still be called a state. For this is precisely what is happening in Hungary and in the wider European Union. A state begins where there is a territory with borders. Now within the Schengen area, European states have partly relinquished their sovereignty to the international community by voluntarily abolishing internal border controls. But we never agreed to lose control over our outside borders. Yet that is now practically taking place. In normal times, a state is in control of events within its territory. Now, Török concludes, we are being controlled by events.