Our “friends” in the European Union are again applying double standards, when on the one hand they are blaming Hungary for its emergency measures but at the same time urging Poland to introduce a state of emergency, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said after a video conference with his Polish counterpart, Jacek Czaputowicz.
“While we are being criticized that the coronavirus law allows the government to take effective measures, some are trying to convince the Poles to introduce an emergency regime, which would allow postponing the presidential elections there, which is clearly in the interest of the opposition,” Szijjártó told national news agency MTI.
Poland’s ruling Law and Justice Party (PIS) submitted a new legislative draft to parliament on Monday evening. In that draft, the speaker of the lower house is empowered to change the date of the election during a state of epidemic but that change must be within the constitutional time limits already in place for electing a president. This would enable the speaker to postpone the election called for May 10 until May 17.
Szijjártó also said that in an international comparison the Visegrád Group has so far excelled in its efforts to combat to the coronavirus epidemic and going forward, their regular consultations could serve a coordination of national measures that could reinforce one another.
Szijjártó highlighted how effective national responses have been at combating the coronavirus. As of last week, Poland, Hungary and Slovakia had the fewest coronavirus cases of all EU member states.
He also pointed out the good cooperation between Poland and Hungary, thanking Czaputowicz for Polish national airline LOT’s assistance in helping bring home 109 Hungarian citizens from various parts of the world who stranded after air travel came to a halt.
He added that while about 8,000 Hungarians have successfully been brought home, his ministry is continuing its efforts to facilitate the return of 900 people still want to return to Hungary.
The foreign ministers of the group are scheduled to hold a meeting on Wednesday.
Title image: Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó speaks in Parliament on April 7. (MTI/Tamás Kovács)