Hungary asks U.N. for global quotas on migrants
Hungary called Tuesday for the United Nations to set global quotas on accepting migrants
Hungary called Tuesday for the United Nations to set global quotas on accepting migrants, saying it was unfair for Europe to take so many refugees fleeing Syria.
Hungary, whose hardline approach on migrants has been widely criticized by other governments and rights activists, said it would make the proposal formally on Wednesday at the United Nations.
“We suggest that all major players should bear some burden. We should introduce some world quotas,” Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto told reporters.
“The major sources of this mass popular movement are countries which became unstable because of international political decisions. They were not made only by Europe.”
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, who has criticized Hungary’s sealing of its borders, has called on Europeans to do more and has convened a meeting for Wednesday on the crisis.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban is expected to take a hard line in the talks after ordering the construction of razor wire on his country’s borders to divert migrants.
Almost 300,000 migrants have entered Hungary this year.
Most arrived to the European Union through porous Greece and are seeking to head to northern Europe, especially Germany, which has welcomed refugees fleeing abuses in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere.
“Europe is not in a shape to accept hundreds of thousands or even millions of economic migrants,” Szijjarto said.
“There are clear European regulations saying that member-states have to defend the external borders,” he said.
He hit back at criticism from Croatia, whose prime minister, Zoran Milanovic, on Tuesday called Hungary’s policy “totally unacceptable.”
Szijjarto said that other countries including the United States - the world’s top overall host nation of immigrants - has also constructed barriers on borders.
“We have critics but no other suggestions, no other alternatives offered by the EU ministers,” he said.
“We don’t do it for fun.”
Szijjarto also called for the international community to step up funding for refugee camps in Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan, the primary host countries for the four million people who have fled the civil war in Syria.