Hungary’s Orban says Poland ‘first place' for talks if his party quits EPP
PR dla Zagranicy
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban was on Friday quoted as saying that Poland would be “the first place to hold talks” if his ruling Fidesz group dropped out of the European People’s Party (EPP) amid a row with the grouping's chief.
Viktor Orban speaks at an EPP conference in Malta in 2017. Photo: European People's Party [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)]
Speaking to public Radio Kossuth, Orban raised the prospect of Fidesz quitting the EPP, the largest group in the European Parliament, Poland’s PAP news agency reported.
A debate over what the Reuters news agency described as the Hungarian government’s anti-Brussels media campaign may end up with Fidesz “finding its place not within but outside the People’s Party,” Orban said in an interview.
Reuters quoted him as saying: “If we need to start something new ... then obviously the first place to hold talks will be in Poland.”
Orban noted that Poland’s ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party was not a member of the EPP, Reuters reported.
He said in the interview that he planned to visit Poland, a major regional ally, on Sunday.
Orban also said Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki would visit Budapest to mark Hungary’s national holiday on March 15.
On Tuesday, EPP leader Manfred Weber demanded Fidesz take down billboards attacking European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker as part of a campaign ahead of European Parliament elections in May, Reuters reported.
The European People’s Party was holding a two-day meeting in Warsaw this week.
Poland and Hungary are close allies in the European Union. Both countries have been critical of Brussels’ policies on issues such as migration.
Orban in 2017 vowed his country would block any move by the European Union to punish Poland over sweeping changes to its judiciary.
Source: PAP, Reuters, TVP Info