Prime Minister Viktor Orbán’s speech at the ceremonial swearing-in of new border guards
12 January 2017, Budapest

Ladies and Gentlemen, parents and family members,

I am very happy to be here with you today. Bitterly cold weather calls for brave and committed people. Today you have taken an oath to protect Hungary’s borders, and to protect the security of Hungarian homes. By doing so, you will also be defending Europe – as has been customary around here for the past five hundred years. Over the centuries the destiny of the Hungarian nation has become the defence of both ourselves and Europe.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

In Europe the era of naivety, illusions and weakness has come to an end. We must stand with both feet on the ground, and the starting-point must be what we see, rather than what we would like to see. There are some who believe that every person coming to Europe wants to live by the customs and laws that we have here. The facts seem to indicate quite the opposite. Terrorist attacks, violence and crime, ethnic and cultural clashes all warn us that those who come here do not want to live our way of life: they want to continue their own ways of life – but with the standard of living of the people of Europe – or of the country where the Brussels bureaucrats want to settle them. We know that the migrants are also victims: victims of the people smugglers; victims of European politicians who promise admission and invitation; and victims of their own illusions. We understand them, but we cannot yield to their demands, and we cannot let them into Europe. Nowhere do human rights prescribe national suicide. Terrorists are also arriving in Europe among the illegal immigrants, and as a result in a number of European countries innocent people have died: they have paid for their countries’ weakness with their lives. The truth must be recognised, even though it favours Hungary. The truth is that Europe would have been better off if it had not attacked Hungarian responses, which have proved to be viable and useful, and which have since been adopted by an increasing number of other countries. The truth is that illegal immigration and unlimited migration simultaneously threaten the security of our everyday lives, our economic achievements and our culture. We have done – and shall continue to do – what our sense of duty and conscience dictate. We shall protect our country’s borders, we shall protect our own lives, and we shall protect the security of our everyday lives. Through our actions we have proved that immigration can be stopped, because this requires only determination, courage and will – and, above all, people like you. Thanks to the efforts of the Hungarian Defence Forces and the Police, today Hungary is one of the European Union’s safest countries. There is no terrorism here, there is no mass violence, there are no trucks being driven into crowds of people. But please do not forget that this does not mean that such atrocities cannot happen to us Hungarians.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The European migration crisis has not come to an end. Brussels continues to seek to distribute the mass of two million who have illegally entered Europe over the past few years. The migration pressure on Hungary’s borders will not end within the next few years. There are hundreds of millions of people standing ready to follow those who have been setting out in the hope of a better life. The world is not heading in the direction of order, but towards an unpredictable state of unrest. Even now we cannot expect a solution from outside, from Brussels. On the contrary, we ourselves must organise our own defence. It is always better to be sure that we cannot be harmed, than to assume that no one wants to harm us. From this it follows that border protection will continue to remain a high-priority national security issue. I can reassure you that the Government will continue to provide the operating conditions for our triple line of defence: physical barriers and equipment, legislative measures and personnel.

Ladies and Gentlemen, oath-takers,

Finally I would like to thank you on behalf of the Hungarian people for having the courage to perform this service. Honour demands that we appreciate those who – even at the risk of their own lives – are prepared to ensure that the rest of the Hungarian people are safe and secure. Your superior officers have given you the knowledge needed to do this job. You have, however, all brought with you from your homes the most important single element: your courage. Do not forget that courage is rightly seen as the most important human quality. This is what makes all other qualities possible. You should likewise not forget that we Hungarians are a lucky nation, because that most important quality is our historical inheritance. It is this courage that has kept Hungary alive for a thousand years, and it is also upon this courage that we build the future of Hungary. Please bear in mind that your courage forms the basis of the Hungarian people’s security.
I wish you success in your work.