By Marton Dunai
BUDAPEST (Reuters) – Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Saturday said Donald Trump had proposed security policies that Europe should take to heart to solve a security crisis he blames on uncontrolled immigration.
Speaking at a summer university in Baile Tusnad, Romania, the Hungarian leader tied increased security threats to increased migration and cited Trump’s proposals at the Republican National Convention to combat terrorism.
Orban is one of Europe’s most outspoken politicians and has in the past upset fellow members of the European Union over policy.
Most recently he has taken a tough stance on Europe’s migrant crisis, objecting to EU resettlement plans and calling for a razor wire fence to be built along his country’s southern border.
Trump accepted the Republican nomination for president on Thursday with a speech that outlined an increased intelligence effort, an end to a “failed policy of nation-building and regime change” and a total suspension of immigration from states “compromised by terrorism.”
He wants a wall to be built along the U.S. border with Mexico.
Orban sought to buttress his own security proposals with Trump’s points.
“I am not a Donald Trump campaigner,” he said in the televised speech. “I never thought I would ever entertain the thought that, of the open options, he (Trump) would be better for Europe and for Hungary.
“But I listened to the candidate and I must tell you he made three proposals to combat terrorism. And as a European I could have hardly articulated better what Europe needs.”
Orban has accused the EU of weakness in the face of a what he sees as a fundamental threat from more than a million migrants who arrived on the continent last year, with hundreds of thousands following them this year.
For the most part, the migrants are fleeing the war in Syria.
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has called Orban “Viktator” – a pun on Viktor and dictator – as a way of putting down the Hungarian’s views.
But Orban also has supporters. Slovak premier Robert Fico, joined Orban’s court challenge of the EU’s mandatory migrant resettlement quotas.
Tapping into Trump’s proposals to create “the best intelligence-gathering organisation in the world,” Orban said that Europe too needs to create a network of national intelligence agencies that ranks with the world’s best.
He then took aim at some of his EU colleagues.
“The second thing, said this valiant American presidential candidate, is to abandon the policy of exporting democracy. I could not have said it more precisely.”
Orban said Western countries acted recklessly to remove the undemocratic but stable regimes in Libya, Syria and Iraq without guaranteeing stability in the aftermath, exposing Europe to a mass wave of migration.
Worse, he said, instead of supporting the regimes that try to control the civil-war-torn countries in North Africa and the Middle East, Europe criticises them for democratic shortfalls.
“If we keep prioritising democracy over stability in regions where we are unlikely to succeed with that, we will create instability, not democracy.”
(Reporting by Marton Dunai Editing by Jeremy Gaunt)