Hungarian PM expects high rate of asylum claims to be rejected

  • World
  • Tuesday, 15 Sep 2015

BUDAPEST (Reuters) - Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban expects a high rate of asylum requests to be rejected after tougher new rules take effect from midnight, according to excerpts of an interview with private broadcaster TV2 published online on Monday.

Orban was also quoted as saying in the interview published on the website that his government "was more likely than not" to declare a crisis situation due to mass migration on Tuesday.

"Given that the Hungarian government considers Serbia a safe country ... in such a case, if someone is a refugee, we will ask them whether they have submitted an asylum request in Serbia," Orban was quoted as saying.

"If they had not done so, given that Serbia is a safe country, they will be rejected," he said.

Asked, whether he expected violent scenes at the southern border after the planned crackdown, he said: "We do not know what will happen. We are prepared for both simple and complicated situations."

Earlier on Monday Orban directed hundreds of new policemen to the southern border with Serbia to help manage record numbers of refugees and migrants trying to enter the European Union.

Orban also said the migrant crisis could cost Hungary up to 200 million euros (147 million pounds).

Economy Minister Mihaly Varga was quoted as saying Hungary may need to amend its 2015 budget if the crisis persists as reserves have been severely depleted.

(Reporting by Gergely Szakacs and Sandor Peto; editing by Anna Willard)

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