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PM Orbán named man of the year at Krynica Economic Forum

September 9th, 2016

A conservative columnist interprets PM Orbán’s honor as proof of his successful politics. His left-wing counterpart accuses the Orbán government of using claims of national sovereignty to entrench corruption.

In his speech at Krynica, PM Orbán said that Central Europe can become the fortress of national identity and Christian values in Europe. He added that Europe should offer help to refugees in their own homelands. For Syrians, he said refugee centres should be set up in western Syria where people could apply to be settled in Europe. European countries could then vet the applicants and decide whether to grant their applications.

In Magyar Idők, László Néző interprets the honour as an expression of support for PM Orbán’s politics. The pro-government columnist believes that through their joint efforts, the Central European countries can defend their national interests in the EU. The strength of the Visegrad group is shown by the member countries smooth co-operation, although their leaders belong to very diverse ideological currents.

The alleged defence of national sovereignty is a mere stunt, Gábor Miklós comments in Népszabadság. The left-wing commentator suspects that both PM Orbán and Polish leader Jaroslav Kaczynski launched their “cultural counterrevolution” against European identity in order to further increase their grip on power in their own countries. Miklós claims that Polish and Hungarian leaders pinpoint the EU as their main enemy because “European institutions limit their possibility to entrench their oligarchic rule and institutionalize corruption”. He accuses the two governments of intending to weaken democratic checks and balances ‘so that they can do whatever they want’.


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