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POLITICS: PM discusses EU permanent support mechanism, enlargement, migration with visiting Hungarian counterpart

Δημοσίευση 14 Δεκεμβρίου 2010, 10:15 / Ανανεώθηκε 27 Ιουνίου 2013, 14:55
POLITICS: PM discusses EU permanent support mechanism, enlargement, migration  with visiting Hungarian counterpart
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Prime minister George Papandreou met on Monday with his visiting Hungarian counterpart Viktor Orban, for talks that included a permanent EU support mechanism, EU enlargement and migration issues.

Prime minister George Papandreou met on Monday with his visiting Hungarian counterpart Viktor Orban, for talks that included a permanent EU support mechanism, EU enlargement and migration issues.

In joint statements to the press afterwards, Papandreou said they had the opportunity to discuss a permanent EU support mechanism "which in recent months, and due to the crisis in Greece and not only, in the eurozone, has become a central issue for the course of Europe, the European economy and the eurozone".

Papandreou also noted that the matter of revision of the Lisbon Treaty will be discussed on Thursday and Friday (EU summit), adding that the Hungarian EU presidency will have the responsibility of moving the process forward at European level in the coming months.

The Greek premier further expressed the country's unconditional support for Hungary, which assumes the EU presidency in the first half of 2011, on the targets it has set out for the EU, "in this big family which can and has so much to do".

Orban pointed out the difficulties faced by the Greek and Hungarian economies, noting "we realise that a different mix of economic and political decisions is needed for each country, otherwise we cannot succeed", and wishing Greece that it will be able to take control of the situation and once again become one of the more successful European countries.

The Hungarian premier said that a revision of the Lisbon Treaty is needed, but agreed with Papandreou that it should be a limited revision.

Orban further said that Greece has a special place in the hearts of the Hungarian people because "it is the origin of European civilisation", adding that "without Greece, Europe cannot have stability".

Papandreou said that the accession course of the Balkan countries is a priority for the EU, and definitely for Greece and Hungary.

The premier said that he and Orban, in the context of the discussion on EU enlargement, also discussed Turkey's accession course "which we both support, under the required prerequisites".

The two prime ministers further discussed the Cyprus issue, ahead of Orban's meeting with Cyprus president Demetris Christofias.

Papandreou also said that they discussed Greece's backing for Bulgaria's and Romania's accession to the Schengen area.

"Enlargement is very important for us. It is a reunification of Europe, and that is why the Balkans are important," Orban said, noting that the Hungarian EU presidency hopes to conclude the negotiations for Croatia, which will enhance the European prospect of the other Balkan countries.

Another topic of discussion was migration within the EU borders, on which Papandreou stressed the need for a "systematic European policy".

He also noted that another matter discussed was that of the Roma, on which he and Orban agreed should be a central issue during the Hungarian presidency.

"We need to see how those communities may feel that they are incorporated with all the proper educational, social and financial services, functionally," Papandreou said.

"One target of the Hungarian presidency will be to expand the European strategy for the Roma," Orban said in turn.

The Hungarian prime minister also expressed the desire to visit Greece again in the spring.

Papandreou later met with the general secretary of the French presidency Claude Gueant, but no statements were made after the meeting.