PM Viktor Orbán's remarks on the USA-Hungarian tension in a radio magazine

Saturday, November 15, 2014

I'm not sure that I accept the resignation of Ildikó Vida (the head of the tax department who was accused of corruption by the US Embassy and one of the individuals who the USA sanctioned with a travel ban) because that would raise the question of Hungary's sovereignty said PM Viktor Orbán to “180 minutes” radio magazine.

The Prime Minister stated that the document that has been provided by an employee of the US Embassy in connection with the corruption scandal, mostly listed earlier embassy concerns. "The document wasn't signed, it had no letter head or seal on it, it was just a piece of paper that included the corruption allegations; it seemed like a collection of accusations the opposition parties try to blame on the government for many years" said the prime minister.

This document appeared "as if someone would like to drag us back to the political climate existed before the elections."

"One takes criticism from a friend seriously, especially when it comes from a great friend (...), but now, we have come to the conclusion that the corruption allegations are not serious," said Orbán adding that every minute "we spend on this issue is a waste of time." "If any Hungarian embassy staff anywhere in the world give such an official document to a foreign government he would be called back the next day".

If the head of the national tax authority offered her resignation, the prime minister would think twice before accepting it; this is because he doesn't not want to set a precedent for foreign governments to accuse a public servant to their liking without providing evidence. "This raises the question of Hungary's sovereignty" said Orbán adding that he won't let any Hungarian citizen down who is accused of a criminal offense without evidence.

The Prime Minister also said that he expected from the head of the tax department to launch criminal complaints against those accused her of corruption without evidence.

Regarding suggestions that the USA-Hungarian tension might be interpreted as part of a dispute between Russia and the West PM Viktor Orbán said the following: This sounds logical but it is a dangerous assumption. "This would mean no less than admitting that a large foreign state can pressure a smaller one to change its policies by using unacceptable means like accusing individual citizens of wrongdoings without providing evidence. This would be such a serious charge against the United States that I reject even considering it" Orbán explained.

"We are allies and friends, and I do not dare to assume that the United States using a smear campaign against innocent citizens on the basis of raw economic interests" said the prime minister, who reaffirmed the need for the South Stream pipeline and the expansion of the Paks nuclear power plant with Russian participation.

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Anonymous said...

The US is a friend of no one, and the enemy of everyone - except one...

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