The Prime Ministers of Bulgaria and Hungary, Boyko Borissov and Victor Orban called for security of EU borders and control on the migrant crisis. The topic was central in their conversations today at the Boyana Residence in Sofia. During Orban’s working visit, views were also exchanged on the future of the EU and the place of the Western Balkan countries in it.
Three prerequisites were pointed out by Prime Minister Borissov for successful solution to the issue of relocation, which, according to him, currently divides European leaders. These include the implementation of agreements with EU neighboring countries, ensuring secure protection of EU external borders, and maintaining security centers close to conflict zones.
“Tensions in Europe, also during elections, have only one reason, and this is the migrant crisis. The agreement with Turkey must function, it is to the advantage of all European citizens. We suggest one hundred percent security of EU borders - migrants to pass only through border cross-points and with documents. The other thing we offer is to have security centers close to the conflicts so that after the conflict is over, people can go back to their countries and contribute to their recovery. When these conditions are met, we can talk about compulsory relocation,” Prime Minister Borissov said, highlighting the two different points of view on the subject – the one of first-line countries that are subject to the strongest migratory pressures and that of the other countries. “If it happens that through our territory or through Greece, a million migrants suddenly reach Italy, that would probably confuse the world. But if we guarantee border security, neighborhood agreements, and security centers where migrants would live, then the discussion will go easy and we will look for mutual compromise,” Borissov said.
Borders can only be guarded by determined leaders. Bulgaria deserves recognition, it deserves to be in Schengen, because it protects the Union's external border and thus also protects Hungary, Viktor Orban pointed out in front of the media after his conversation with the Bulgarian Prime Minister. He congratulated Borissov on his policy and stressed the useful development of contacts with Turkey on migration. “We are in favor of cooperation with Turkey, because borders should be protected on both sides and there should be agreements on this issue. Bulgaria can rely on our support in this respect,” Orban said.
Agreement was also expressed on the European perspective for the Western Balkan countries. The Hungarian Prime Minister expressed his full support for this priority of the Bulgarian Presidency of the Council of the EU and described it as a historic chance for the region. “Now we have a chance for Balkan integration in Europe ... It is not enough for the Balkans to join the EU, they have to be built into the Union through infrastructure. This will bring benefits to all sides and therefore I wish Boyko Borissov success,” he said, emphasizing Bulgaria's important role in European politics.
What we offer for the Western Balkans is beneficial not only for us but also for other countries because it will stimulate economic development, Borissov pointed out and presented the infrastructure connectivity projects that are currently being implemented.
The two Prime Ministers honored the memory of the Apostle of Freedom Vasil Levski by laying flowers at his monument in Sofia.