Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó lambasted what he called “lies” by certain European Union politicians about Hungary’s new law which enhances government powers to tackle the novel coronavirus epidemic.
In a Facebook entry, Szijjártó said EU foreign ministers on Friday had again discussed the coronavirus crisis. “There may only be 27 of us left but we could have easily added to the virtual table a 28th seat: for hypocrisy,” the minister wrote.
Szijjártó said that while some of his counterparts had recited the terms “unity” and “Team Europe” as “mantras” and the need to “bring the EU closer to people’s hearts” during Friday’s meeting, a number of them “were enthusiastically spreading the lies, distortions and fake news about the Hungarian coronavirus law all week long”. The minister said he had addressed this issue and asked his counterparts to “first read” the law “then speak”, arguing that it was “obvious that none of them had read the law before talking about it”. The law, he said, had “all the answers to their concerns”.
Szijjártó said he had received phone calls from several of his counterparts since the meeting, adding that he had promised to send them a copy of the law to read. He lamented that while more than a thousand people are dying from the virus in Europe each day and tens of thousands are being infected “the Finnish, Austrian, Greek, German, Danish, Luxembourg, Dutch and Swedish prime ministers, ministers and party leaders are worried about who gets to decide on pronouncing an end to the state of emergency in Hungary”. “If we weren’t in the midst of dealing with a pandemic, I would call this pathetic,” Szijjártó wrote. “But since we are dealing with a pandemic, I find it alarming.”