Romanian spy chief warns of ‘threat for EU from Hungary’

Eduard Hellvig [Website of Eduard Hellvig]

Eduard Hellvig, currently a conservative MEP who has been chosen by President Klaus Iohannis to be the next chief of the Romanian foreign intelligence service, has published an article in which he warns of the “threat for the EU” from the rapprochement of Hungary with Moscow.

In an article published in his blog and republished bytHotnews, Hellvig, who is a politician from Romania’s German minority, writes that Romania and the EU face an unprecedented case  – “the blatant prejudice against liberal democratic values by the regime of Victor Orbán”, the Hungarian Prime Minister.

“Hungary tends to be a threat to European architecture, a Trojan horse increasingly under the influence of Moscow,” Hellvig writes.

He continues: “The Russian-Hungarian partnership is not only threatening the Romanian-Hungarian strategic partnership, which becomes more and emptier due to the nationalist hostility of Budapest, but also NATO and EU interests in the area. Therefore, I believe that Romania, caught in the clamp of this poisoned Russian-Hungarian Entente, should take the leading role in defending democratic values and allied interests in the region.”

Hellvig argues that the EU cannot afford ‘misbehaving of the British or Greek type” or “double play in the style of Sofia, Rome or Nicosia”.

For the first time in the post-Soviet period, Russian has an offensive military doctrine which foresees the use of nuclear weapons not only in case of a nuclear conflict, but also in a conventional conflict, Hellvig writes.  He adds that Eastern Europe is especially targeted, in the perspective of a NATO enlargement, of installing an anti-ballistic missile shield or of any preemptive actions which would be seen by Moscow as hostile.

Therefore, Romania, Poland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania become “the main targets of the Russian imperialism”, writes Hellvig.

The author argues in favour of strengthening the military capacity of his country and increasing military spending at 2%, a goal dear to President Iohannis. He also argues in favour of the consolidation of the country’s institutions, as well as the rule of law, of “reclaiming a society still undermined by corruption”.

Progress in this field achieved in last years, especially in 2014, “have helped save Romania from a Ukraine-type scenario”, writes Hellvig.

The author also argues in favour of Romania playing a major role in supporting reforms in Ukraine and Moldova, Romania’s neighbour in which most of the population speaks Romanian. 

Victor Orbán, whose conservative Fidesz party in April won a new four-year term, has been accused by some parts of the EU of seeking to amass too much power and rejecting democratic checks and balances.

Orbán has made it clear that Hungary would act according to what was in its national interest, even if that meant annoying its allies in the European Union and the United States over the country’s relations with Russia.

Last year, Orbán agreed with Putin on a loan of about €10 billion to build two additional reactors in the country’s only nuclear central in the central city of Paks.

On 17 February, Orbán hosted a visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to Budapest which raised eyebrows in many European quarters.

>> Read: Putin and Orbán contemplate stronger energy ties

>> Read: Orbán complains about Tusk over the EU's Russia policy

>> Read: Orbán says EU’s Energy Union is a threat to Hungary

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