As if Angela Merkel was treading on eggshells alongside Orbán at their joint press conference. The German Chancellor did not criticize the government, but instead emphasized the common points of the two countries' policies and the importance of economic cooperation.
Merkel's conflict avoiding, almost overly diplomatic phrases have serious interests beneath the surface. Hírklikk asked MSZP’s parliamentary representative Ágnes Kunhalmi about these points.
“The kind of thanks that Angela Merkel expressed today was not addressed to Viktor Orbán, but to the Hungarian people as a whole, to the right and to the left alike. She thanked the border guards of that time for their courage – and I would mention here the decision of the government of Miklós Németh at that time, with Gyula Horn as the Foreign Minister – made in early August 1989, to open borders without any opposition pressure. At this historic moment, the country as a whole, as well as the politicians and the Hungarian government longed for freedom. Political leadership had been opening to the West for years by that time. ”
Listening to the words of Angela Merkel, Kunhalmi made a number of criticisms that did not arise during the meeting. Such as the political relationship between the two countries or the authoritarian leadership of the Hungarian government.
“Merkel said that the Hungarian government was making good use of EU funds, but I have to say that the majority of the Hungarian people would argue strongly with this statement by Merkel, as the Hungarian population does not sense much of this spending. Angela Merkel is also only interested in the German economy and the stability of German capital and its growing influence, which is why she supports Orbán despite the fact that Orbán has previously attacked the European Union and Angela Merkel herself. Now it is clear how an authoritarian state could be built out of European Union money in the middle of Europe. Apart from the rhetorical reprimand, no deeds or meaningful action has taken place in relation to the governance and measures of Fidesz.”
Viktor Orbán said he saw no clashes between German and Hungarian politics, although Angela Merkel 's party, the CDU had voted in large numbers in the European Parliament for the Sargentini-report against the Hungarian government as well as for the suspension of Fidesz’ People' s Party membership. Nevertheless, today's Merkel meeting, according to Ágnes Kunhalmi, proved that no meaningful action is expected to be taken against the government, as, despite all previous criticism, no real action has yet been taken in these matters.
"Viktor Orbán and Angela Merkel have already made a deal, I think not now, but years ago, since Orbán fully serves German capital," Kunhalmi said. Germany has been Hungary's largest investor for years, mainly because of investments in the automotive industry.