Orban calls Hungary country of "European freedom" in Bavarian speech

Hungary Prime Minister Viktor Orban defended his anti-immigration stance on Monday, saying his nation is on the side of "European freedom" during a speech held in southern Germany.

"I promise you that Hungary will also in the future always be on the side of European freedom," Orban said in a speech before the parliament of the southern German state of Bavaria Monday.

Hungary has always been a country that refuses to accept occupation, suppression and dictatorship, he said at the event held to commemorate the 60-year anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian Uprising against the Soviet Union.

Orban also referred to the movement of migrants - mostly from the Middle East and Africa - through Europe as "threatening."

Bavarian premier Horst Seehofer, one of the most vocal critics of Chancellor Angela Merkel's decision to keep Germany's borders open to refugees, last year began to align himself with some of Orban's more restrictive migration policies. The two have met on three occasions during the past year.

Orban's presence drew strong resistance from opposition parties.

Opposition parties - including the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD) and the far-left Die Linke - have slammed Seehofer's governing Christian Social Union (CSU) for giving the increasingly authoritarian Hungarian leader a platform in the legislature.

Last update: Mon, 17/10/2016 - 21:54

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