Skip to Content

Katalin Novak; Annika Strandhall. Wikipedia

Hungary summons Swedish ambassador after spat over pro-family law

Hungarian Secretary of State for Family and Youth Affairs, has addressed a letter to Swedish Minister for Social Affairs after the left-wing politician compared Hungary’s pro-family action plan to Nazi Germany.

Published: February 17, 2019, 10:50 am

    Read more

    Budapest

    Katalin Novak wrote a letter Annika Strandhall, published by Hungarian daily Magyar Hirlap on Saturday, in which Novak “firmly rejected” Strandhall’s accusations.

    Strandhall tweeted on Monday that Hungary’s “alarming” policies were “reeking of the 1930’s”. She suggested the Hungarian prime minister, who she said seeks to promote the birth of “more true Hungarian” babies, was a “right-wing populist trying to obscure the consequences of those policies to the independence women have fought for”.

    Novak said she was “shocked to learn that on Twitter you claimed that the family protection action plan announced last Sunday by Prime Minister Viktor Orban recalls Germany’s thirties, and that our government exploits Hungarian women.

    “We respect the decision of the Swedish government that you consider the integration of immigrants and their family reunification a top priority and that migration is your answer to the demographic challenges,” she added.

    Novak noted that “even if we do not share your approach, we respect the right of Swedish citizens to democratically choose their political leaders and the government’s freedom to take internal decisions in a democratic way. That is what we offer and require from our partners”.

    Novak continued: “In Hungary, we believe in strong families as the basis of our community. We have driven family-friendly governance and gained two-third parliamentary majority three times in a row at democratic general elections. Hungarian citizens have many times expressed they will and entitled us to stop illegal migration at our borders, not to let in a mass of economic migrants but instead empower Hungarian women and men to be able to have as many children as they wish to and have them as soon as they wish to.”

    In her letter, Novak insisted that Strandhall apologises for her meddling remarks.

    Your Excellency, Minister Stradhäll,
    I was shocked to learn that on Twitter you claimed that the family protection action plan announced last Sunday by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán recalls Germany’s thirties, and that our government exploits Hungarian women.
    As Minister of State for Family and Youth Affairs of Hungary, I firmly reject your accusations. It is also unusual and unfriendly that a European government’s member condemns another European government for its internal policies in such a way and style without at least getting informed and using the traditional diplomatic channels before.
    First of all, let me congratulate that after four months of struggle, you could lately form the Swedish government.
    I am aware of the ideological differences between us, concerning among others the different responses our countries give to the demographic crisis affecting Europe. We respect the decision of the Swedish government that you consider the integration of immigrants and their family reunification a top priority and that migration is your answer to the demographic challenges.
    Statistical data show that promoting family reunification increases the number of asylum seekers, which raises additional human rights concerns, such as the expectedly long duration of family reunification in Sweden in 2018.
    I am also aware that your government just decided to extend the border control by three months because of the continuing threat to internal security in Sweden.
    I have also read that the Swedish Employment Agency compiled a report that, in five years, the skilled labour shortage will be about 100,000 people, especially in health care, IT sector and education.
    We follow the processes in your country and even if we do not share your approach, we respect the right of Swedish citizens to democratically choose their political leaders and the government’s freedom to take internal decisions in a democratic way. That is what we offer and require from our partners.
    In Hungary, we believe in strong families as the basis of our community. We have driven a family-friendly governance and gained two third parliamentary majority three times in a row at democratic general elections. Hungarian citizens have many times expressed they will and entitled us to stop illegal migration at our borders, not to let in mass of economic migrants but instead empower Hungarian women and men to be able to have as many children as they wish to and have them as soon as they wish to. That is why we have introduced series of pro-family measures which are highly supported by Hungarians. Our intention is to give the freedom of choice for Hungarian women and men.
    It is unacceptable that you compare Hungary to the Nazi Germany. I reject this firmly in the name of our country.
    Your Prime Minister Stefan Löfven at a conference said that the most important issue in the May EP elections will be the fight against right-wing extremism and nationalism. He also mentioned that European social democrats are able to stop these extremists. I’ll add that Hungary has been mistakenly cited as being an extremist country.
    I hope that the social democrats will be able to filter out the far-right allies at least in their own house. I draw your attention to the fact that the European ally of your party, the Hungarian Socialist Party, is cooperating closely with Jobbik, the extremist far-right party of Hungary.
    A member of parliament from the far-right Jobbik who is today their parliamentary group leader, Márton Gyöngyösi, caused scandal a few years ago with this remark: ‘It is timely to list people of Jewish ancestry who live here, and especially in the Hungarian Parliament and the Hungarian Government, who, indeed, pose a national security risk to Hungary’. In an interview, Gergely Karácsony, the former prime ministerial candidate of the Socialist and Dialogue for Hungary coalition, who is also currently running for mayor of Budapest also with the support of your political allies, said it is not nazism to draw a list of MPs who are Jews. You might be seriously concerned about these processes happening around your political allies.
    In case you are interested in Hungary’s family policy and the measures of the new action plan, I am ready to present them personally or via a detailed document to you. Our Ambassador in Stockholm is also easy to reach for information.
    Meanwhile, I ask you to express your criticisms about Hungary in the spirit of mutual respect, and to clarify your position on the question of whether the European Socialists, in your opinion, are doing the right thing when cooperating with the Hungarian left-wing parties that are building a coalition with the extreme right-wing party Jobbik.
    Until then, I insist that you apologize for what you have said.
    Yours sincerely,
    Katalin Novák
    Minister of State for Family and Youth Affairs
    Ministry of Human Capacities
    Vice President of FIDESZ – Hungarian Civic Union

    Strandhall was also asked whether she was concerned about the co-operation between the Hungarian socialists and the right-wing Jobbik party.

    Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto responded on Thursday that “Hungary spends money on families rather than migrants”. On Friday, Swedish ambassador Niclas Trouvé was summoned to the MFA.

    At a press conference, Szijjarto said Strandhall had used an “unacceptable” tone in her tweet and that the Swedish ambassador had been told at the ministry that Strandhall’s comments, too, were unacceptable.

    Szijjarto said the ambassador had taken note of Hungary’s stance and promised to convey it to Stockholm.

    Consider donating to support our work

    Help us to produce more articles like this. FreeWestMedia is depending on donations from our readers to keep going. With your help, we expose the mainstream fake news agenda.

    Keep ​your language polite​. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in​,​ for example​, ​Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.

    If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violation​s​ of​ any​ law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.

    If your comments are subject to preview ​by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.

    We reserve the right to del​ete​ comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.

    Europe

    Erdogan questions Macron’s ‘sanity’ and accuses him of Islamophobia

    AnkaraThe Turkish president denounced the attitude of the French leader towards Muslims in France and spoke out against the measures taken after the beheading of teacher Samuel Paty.

    Will universalist republican slogans be enough to save France?

    ParisAfter the deadly knife attack in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine, the French are particularly worried about a terrorist risk. So-called "progressives" have contributed to this situation, the Minister of National Education stressed. But Emmanuel Macron is guilty too.

    Knife murder in Dresden was Islamic terror attack – Syrian jihadist arrested

    DresdenTwo deaths, two knife attacks, one in Dresden, the other in Conflans-Sainte-Honorine. And while the decent people in France publicly express their solidarity in the hundreds of thousands for the history teacher Samuel Paty, who was beheaded by an Islamic terrorist, the analogous terror murder of a German in Dresden is only worth a marginal note in the "quality media".

    French teacher suspended in 2015 already for having shown caricatures of prophet

    Muslim parents at the majority immigrant "priority college" François Villon in Mulhouse in 2015 described the attitude of a teacher as "aggressive" because he had lectured his students on free speech. He was suspended for four months to “straighten things out” according to the rector.

    Death of Victorine riles France – suspect took part in tribute march

    GrenobleMore than two weeks after the discovery of the body of Victorine Dartois, the prosecutor of Grenoble announced the arrest of an individual on Wednesday, October 14, who has admitted having killed the young student of 18 years, according to several media outlets.

    China overtakes US to become EU’s biggest trading partner

    BrusselsEurostat announced that imports from China increased by 4,9 percent year-on-year in the January-July period, surpassing the United States. China is currently the biggest trading partner of the European Union (EU).

    Former German mainstream journalist feels ‘liberated to work for free media’

    BerlinOn Saturday, at the invitation of the AfD, the Second Free Media Conference took place in the Marie-Elisabeth-Lüders-Haus of the German Bundestag. The former mainstream journalist Matthias Matussek (who has written for Spiegel, Welt and Stern) gave a lecture there on the topic of "Critics on the sidelines - the 'quality media' are losing their bright minds".

    Vlaams Belang topping the polls in Flanders: ‘Belgians no longer feel at home’

    BrusselsVlaams Belang, the Flemish anti-immigration party, remains at the top of the polls in Flanders. How does one explain the incredible success of Tom Van Grieken's party?

    Alexey Navalny – a victim of intoxication or a master of political posturing?

    BerlinThe so called “Navalny case” is coming thick and fast and is looking more and more like a smartly prearranged and well-played spectacle. The Russian opposition figure and journalist Alexey Navalny has awoken from his coma at the German Charité hospital - he seems to be back in shape giving interviews, including a two-and-a-half-hour conversation with a famous Russian You-tube blogger Yuriy Dud.

    BLM supporter Procter & Gamble champions double standards

    Procter & Gamble (P&G) is building a new production facility in the Turkish industrial city of Gebze for 80 million US dollars. The American multinational consumer goods corporation headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, has elevated double standards to a new art.

    Go to archive