Austro-Hungarian dispute over migrants, EU funding continues

Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó and Austrian Social Democratic Party leader Andreas Schieder locked horns over Hungary’s stance on migration. Sijjártó announced at a press conference on 4 August that the EU leads “financial warfare” on countries that refuse to honour migrant allocation quotas by axing their funding – something that Szijjártó alleges that Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern supports. This was in response to Schieder’s claim that net receiver Budapest views the EU as a “bankomat”. Hungary’s unwillingness to commit to the quotas promoted Brussels to launch a legal investigation.

Austria has voiced discontent with tending their commitments. Both countries situated along the route to Western Europe, Vienna recently dispatched its military to patrol the Austro-Italian border – a move thought to coincide with upcoming elections. Schieder has employed tough rhetoric on conservative coalition partner People’s Party’s anti-migrant slant. This is not the first time Szijjártó has sparked controversy. He recently backed Warsaw in a EU-wide dispute over Poland’s judiciary reforms

About author: Elisabeth Gheorghe

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