In the context of the war in Ukraine, the Prime Minister said “in Hungary, the national side says that this is a Russian-Ukrainian war, and we’re Hungarians. While naturally we help the people in trouble, at the same time we will not take a single step that could put Hungary in harm’s way”. “We cannot help anyone by destroying ourselves in the meantime,” he added.
He took the view that if “we become involved in a war which is not our war,” we have nothing to gain, but everything to lose. The national side’s position is clear: “we will remain on the side of peace, we will not supply weapons, we will not send soldiers, and we will likewise not allow arms to be transported through the territory of Hungary to Ukraine,” he stated.
He said the Left’s position is also clear, they see not a conflict that is a war between two other peoples, but one “which they themselves have something to do with directly, and in their view, it would be right for Hungary to become involved in this conflict”. At the same time, NATO says that every Member State is independent, it is for the national governments to decide what they will do; the question is “whether there is anything that we will do together,” and the answer to this question is that there will be no such operation, NATO will not send soldiers and will not send weapons, he pointed out.
According to Mr Orbán, just because this is the shared position within NATO does not mean that we do not have debates, and there are some in NATO who “contrary to the Hungarian position, would continually want to push NATO into this conflict”. At the same time, the Hungarian Left want to please those countries that are more inclined to push NATO into the conflict, he said.
He stressed that the situation is difficult and risky, and the war is at stake in these elections because if the Left were to win the elections, the number of NATO countries that “would push NATO and Hungary into this conflict” would increase. Therefore, “if we want peace, then that can only be represented by the national side both in Hungary and in NATO,” he highlighted.
The Prime Minister said Hungary also owes responsibility, we must always help people in trouble, and “we are helping beyond our means and strength”; as regards European assistance, “in relation to our population, we are taking in the highest number of refugees, we are providing care for the most people”. Therefore, “we are not a lousy, but a great nation which is doing the morally right thing,” he underlined.
He said that “we are, however, unable to help the Ukrainians by having Hungary shot to pieces”; having the Russian gas and oil taps turned off and bringing the Hungarian economy to a halt is no help.
He took the view that the Hungarian interest is for peace, and this is in the best interests of the Ukrainians and Russians as well. Additionally, we must preserve the country’s security, not only in a military, but equally in an economic sense, he explained. He added that if no energy comes, the Hungarian economy comes to a halt, this is why he is struggling against the European position that seeks to extend the sanctions to gas and oil.
The Prime Minister said the plan is to transform in the decade ahead the structure of Hungarian energy production in such a way that most energy will be derived from nuclear sources and another part from solar energy, and the two together will account for over 90 per cent of the country’s energy needs. “Naturally, there will always be some energy source coming from Russia.” However, the goal is not to have zero imports from there, but “to stop our dependence, to always have something else, and not to be exposed,” he pointed out.
He said Russia and Ukraine are two countries which play a prominent role in the world’s grain supply, and now there is a serious chance that the production of both countries might be lost. “And then there is hunger because if there is no grain, there is hunger,” he said.
He took the view that “the threat we’re facing is that as the price of grain will increase,” a situation may arise that “our grain stocks are sucked out of Hungary by foreigners at high prices, in which case there will be none left here, and then we will have to import grain at even higher prices”. If it drags on, the war may have the consequence for the European economy that certain food products will not be available in sufficient quantities, he added.
Mr Orbán highlighted that “there are major issues here, major connections, the stakes are high, we mustn’t act in haste, we mustn’t talk without thinking, we must be firm and swift, but prudent at the same time”. Now the stakes are high, and at times like this, we need calm, composure, experience and the ability to rise above the daily political disputes, he laid down.
He also said “this election is not a foregone conclusion,” this is an open fight. He advised everyone to go to the ballots under any circumstances, and to ensure that not only they attend the vote, but that they are accompanied by others who share similar views. “If we all go to the ballots, we will get the result, but only then,” he stated.
Regarding the referendum, he said the Hungarian people are perfectly aware that in the West “there is this gender madness” which calls into question, seeks to move around and rearrange the most fundamental and safest points of life. They know that “this trouble is knocking at our door,” and this is why every survey has concluded that there will be a high attendance at the referendum, he said.
He took the view that the traditional concept of the family and life in general enjoys extremely high support, and in this regard the Left-Right dividing line does not work at all because this is about “whether we want to continue to live our lives normally, or embark on an adventure which turns upside down, through our children, everything that we have so far regarded as safe points of reference”. The people have firm views, and here, too, the only question is whether they will come along and state their opinion by answering all four questions in the negative, the Prime Minister said.