Hungarys far-right leader apply Christian meaning to justify his immigration policy
” Europe can dismiss or repudiate or struggle against its own identity and its Christian roots. But by doing so the society commits suicide ,” said Laszlo Kiss-Rigo, the bishop of Szeged, as he drove into Budapest on a recent afternoon.” And the more migrants that come, the more Christian importances is likely to be irrigated down .”
Christian ethics, or a particular interpretation of them, have become the centrepiece of Hungarian government messaging under its far-right leader, Viktor Orban, and Kiss-Rigo operates at the nexus of the prime minister’s interests.
As well as his role as bishop, he is also the chairman of Szeged’s local football unit, which is owned by the church. He was in Budapest to make arrangements for the inaugural concert at a new multipurpose stadium, which will be opened afterwards the summer months with an impression by Placido Domingo- precisely one part of the massive investment that the football-mad Orban has moved into the sport.
On the matter of movement, and much else, Kiss-Rigo and Orban are singing from the same hymn sheet. The bishop disavows, for example, that putting up walls to keep people out of the country doesn’t fit with Christian prices.” Everyone who strikes at your doorway and asks admission is welcome to be examined. But people who jump into your room through the ceiling should be protected against ,” he said.
Now in his third consecutive period, Orban has increasingly applied far-right and anti-migrant rhetoric as he cements command of the country in increasingly despotic style. He will describe his organisation as an” illiberal democracy”, but recently he has changed focus, preferring instead to call it a “Christian democracy”. The government’s messaging is still based around halt immigration and protecting a “besieged” Europe from outsiders, but it now comes in increasingly Christian package, both at home and abroad.
At a lavish party to mark US independence day in Budapest, Orban told guests that lastly, with the accession of Donald Trump, there was an” overlap of values” between the US and Hungary.” Neither of us is willing to accept the hypocrisy of modern politics, which forgets the fact that Christianity is the most persecuted belief globally ,” he said. In a sign of just how much things have changed in the relationship over the past few years, Trump’s ambassador David Cornstein announced Orban a” perfect spouse” and arranged for his old friend, the vocalist Paul Anka, to serenade the Hungarian prime minister.
Trump himself lavished praise on Orban during a May inspect to the White House that pointed years of isolation in which top US officials shunned Orban’s government over rule-of-law concerns.” You have been great with respect to Christian parishes. You have really applied a block up and we appreciate that very much ,” said Trump, apparently referring to the fence Orban’s government has built along Hungary’s southern frontier to keep out migrants.