There is no need for Frontex to defend our borders for us

In Salzburg on Thursday, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said that “There is no need for Frontex to defend the Hungarian borders for us”.

Arriving at a summit of EU heads of state and government in the Austrian city, the Prime Minister told journalists that the European Commission has made a proposal which states that “if there is a problem, national powers should be taken away from Member States, and the defence of the borders should be managed by the EU”. On Wednesday he handed over a proposal to Austria which he had earlier presented to Bulgaria, according to which, he said, this problem can be solved – not at the expense of Member States, but allowing “the right of defence to be retained by Member States”.

The Prime Minister said that “Frontex is a fine thing, but never once in its life has it defended a single metre of border – while we have defended hundreds of kilometres”. The Prime Minister stated that there is no need for it “to defend the Hungarian border instead of us – quite apart from questions of principle relating to sovereignty”.

Mr. Orbán said this is what Member States should stand for, “we outnumber those who oppose this”, and “At this point in time the odds are on our side”.

Regarding Brexit, the Prime Minister stressed that Hungary is one of the countries which believes that the British should not be punished. “We need a fair Brexit and good cooperation between Britain and the European Union in the future”, he said.

Asked whether he expects the issue of the “Sargentini Report” to be raised at the meeting, he replied that “everyone sees that as a joke”.


The Hungarian Government was the only one in Europe to ask the people about immigration

Péter Szijjártó

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade“In contrast to the claim made by the French Minister for EU Affairs, Hungary was the only state in Europe in which the Government asked the people’s opinion on illegal immigration”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said in a statement to Hungarian news agency MTI on Sunday.
Reacting to a Twitter post by Nathalie Loiseau, the Minister stressed: “Hungary will also not be giving up its right to defend its borders, even if the politicians in Paris, Brussels and Strasbourg want to take that away from us so that they can allow in the migrants”.

“The Hungarian Government is saying no to illegal immigration In accordance with the will of the Hungarian and European people, while the cowardly pro-immigration politicians didn’t dare to ask the people”, he added.

In a Twitter post on Saturday, the French Government’s Minister for EU Affairs claimed that in contrast to France, Hungary and Italy had not organised debates on Europe. “Perhaps the populists are afraid to let the people voice their opinion”, Nathalie Loiseau suggested.


MAC warns against China’s residence permits for Taiwanese

Taipei, Sept. 12 (CNA) The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) on Wednesday accused Beijing of trying to weaken Taiwan’s state sovereignty by issuing new residence permits for Taiwanese living, working and studying in China.

In a statement, the MAC said the initiative is aimed at undermining Taiwan’s state sovereignty and altering cross-strait relations, and it urged Taiwanese who have applied for the cards not to enable Chinese authorities in their united-front tactics against Taiwan.

The council also warned Taiwanese of other downsides to China’s new residence permits, such as increased taxes and social insurance and compromised privacy protection.

The MAC issued the statement in response to remarks earlier in the day by An Fengshan (安峰山), spokesman for China’s Taiwan Affairs Office, who said that more than 22,000 Taiwanese had applied for the Chinese residency permits since it was launched on Sept. 1.

The MAC, however, disputed the figure, saying it has been collecting relevant information via different channels, which will serve as reference for drafting future policies.

The new residence permits for Taiwanese are different from China’s resident identity cards, according to An.

He said the permits will serve as “identity cards” to allow greater convenience for Taiwanese living, working and studying in China and are not linked to any political agenda.

(By Miao Zong-han and Romulo Huang)

U.S. congressman urges full implementation of Taiwan Travel Act

Washington, Sept. 14 (CNA) U.S. Republican Representative Chris Smith on Friday urged his country’s executive branch to fully implement the Taiwan Travel Act to bring about an increase in exchanges of high-level officials from Taiwan and the United States.

In a letter to U.S. State Secretary Mike Pompeo, Smith said President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文)’s recent visit to the U.S. showed the positive development of bilateral ties between Washington and Taipei.

“Building on this, I urge you to fully implement the Taiwan Travel Act to allow regular and high-level exchanges between U.S. and Taiwanese officials,” Smith said to Pompeo in the letter.

Tsai made stopovers in two American cities, one in Los Angeles and the other in Houston, during her visits to Paraguay and Belize, two of Taiwan’s 17 diplomatic allies, in August.

Tsai’s U.S. stopovers were closely watched as they were the first since U.S. President Donald Trump signed the Taiwan Travel Act into law in March.

The Taiwan Travel Act encourages high-level U.S. officials to visit Taiwan and vice versa. It could lead to a change in previous U.S. practice that restricted bilateral visits by Cabinet-level ministers but allowed Taiwanese presidents to transit through U.S. cities en route to other countries.

During Tsai’s recent transits in the U.S., she made a public address while visiting the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in southern California, her first public address in the U.S. since she took office as president.

Taiwan-based reporters traveling with the president were allowed to file stories at the scene, which was also a first.

Previously, only U.S.-based Taiwanese reporters could report on the president’s activities during a stopover, while those traveling with the president could only file their stories after leaving U.S. soil.

In addition to calling for the full implementation of the Taiwan Travel Act, Smith also urged the U.S. administration to “work diligently to ensure Taiwan’s participation in the United Nations and other international organizations.”

Smith said China has stepped up measures to diplomatically isolate Taiwan and intensify threats against the island, which has altered the status quo in the Indo-Pacific region.

“China has launched a multi-domain campaign against Taiwan that includes many aggressive and provocative actions, such as the dispatching of warships, bombers, and fighter jets, to encircle the island, as well as conducting live-fire military exercises near Taiwan’s waters,” Smith said.

“Furthermore, in the diplomatic space, China has worked assiduously to cut off Taiwan’s diplomatic partners and block Taiwan from participating in international organizations,” Smith added.

“China’s provocations are brazen and the U.S. must publicly protest China’s continued alteration of the status quo in the South China Sea and its multi-pronged effort to threaten and isolate Taiwan,” the congressman said.

Smith also urged the U.S. State Department to reaffirm the U.S.’s unwavering commitment to the Taiwan Relations Act and the Six Assurances since they form the foundation of U.S. relations with Taiwan.

“I applaud the administration’s commitment to building a free and open Indo-Pacific region. Supporting Taiwan is crucial in realizing this goal,” he said.

(By Chiang Chin-yeh and Frances Huang)

Foreign Ministry thanks EP for supporting Taiwan

On September 12, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) thanked the European Parliament (EP) for approving the EU-China relations report voicing strong support for Taiwan.

The EU-China relations report urged an end to Beijing’s military intimidation and expressed support for Taiwan’s international participation.

Adopted during a plenary session the same day, the report reaffirms the EP’s backing for Taiwan’s meaningful engagement in international bodies including the International Civil Aviation Organization and the World Health Organization. It also reiterates support for a Taiwan-EU bilateral investment agreement.

Pointing out the contrasting political developments in Taiwan and China, with a multiparty democracy on one side of the strait and an increasingly authoritarian regime on the other, the report also calls on the EU and its member states to do their upmost in urging Beijing to refrain from further military provocation toward Taiwan and endangering regional peace and stability.

The EP also voiced concern over China’s unilateral decision to start using new flight routes in the Taiwan Strait. All cross-strait disputes should be settled by peaceful means on the basis of international law, the report stated, adding that it encourages the resumption of official dialogue between Taipei and Beijing.

As a responsible member of the global community, Taiwan will continue to uphold regional security and stability, and fulfill its international responsibilities through close cooperation with like-minded countries, the Office of the President said in a statement released on September 13.

Budapest Airport expands by 10,000m² as Pier B is officially opened

Budapest Airport unveiled its brand-new Pier B project, part of the gateway’s BUD 2020 development programme to enhance airport infrastructure and improve the passenger experience. The pier, constructed by KÉSZ Építő Zrt. and adjoining Terminal 2B, spans 225m in length and will add over 10,000m2 of space to the current terminal. Inaugurated last week, the facility opens just as the airport prepares to hit 15 million passengers by year-end, two million more than it processed last year, an impressive increase of 14-15%.

Pier B, which will mainly be used for non-Schengen flights, accommodates 10 new boarding jetways, the infrastructure allowing for three wide-body aircraft to be served simultaneously. “This is one of the main reasons for building this new pier,” comments Jost Lammers, CEO, Budapest Airport. “We are supporting wide-body operations to North America with American Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines and Air Canada Rouge, while also having regular services from Emirates, Qatar Airways and Air China to the Middle East and Asia. We have never had so many long-haul destinations for passengers before.” Overall,

Pier B will have a total of 27 direct, bussed and pedestrian boarding options, advancing operations for the 44 airlines flying from the airport this summer.

Pier B is just one element of a series of projects taking shape over the airport site as part of the five-year BUD 2020 development programme. With the investments totalling between €170-€180 million the next phase includes the building of a new multi-story car park outside Terminal 2, plus this September the airport will break ground on the construction of a state-of-the-art 20,000m2 air cargo logistics centre, which will also see 36,000m2 additional apron space being added.

While Pier B is now open, and the multi-story car park and air cargo logistics centre still work in progress, the airport’s development team is already working on plans to add a new Terminal 3 project. To be situated next to Terminals 2A and B, the latest plans will accommodate the expected passenger traffic growth over the next decade. “We are working on various options and concepts for a potential Terminal 3, further enhancing the passenger experience as we continue to grow,” adds Lammers.

Een nieuw Blu Hotel voor Brugge

Radisson Blu opent in Brugge, een UNESCO-werelderfgoedstad

Radisson Blu, het upper-upscale merk dat staat voor een positieve en persoonlijke service in een stijlvolle setting, kondigt met trots de opening van een nieuw hotel in de historisch stad Brugge aan.

Dit prachtige hotel, dat 109 kamers telt, bevindt zich middenin de UNESCO-werelderfgoedstad en ligt op wandelafstand van het historische en middeleeuwse centrum, dat dateert uit de 12de eeuw.

Richard Moore, Senior Area Vice President voor West-Europa, UK en Ierland, zegt: “We zijn enorm verheugd het portfolio van ons upper-upscale hotelmerk te mogen uitbreiden met de opening van dit iconische hotel. Brugge is werkelijk een unieke bestemming en een hotspot met heel wat erfgoed, design en innovatie – alle waarden waar Radisson Blu voor staat. We voelen ons bevoorrecht om de bezoekers van de stad een award-winning gastenbeleving van wereldklasse te kunnen bieden die volledig aansluit bij de charme van deze historische stad. Als één van de weinige internationale hotelmerken in de stad, kijken we ernaar uit om onze ‘Yes I Can! Spirit’ aan onze gasten voor te stellen.”

Het nieuwe Radisson Blu Hotel is gelegen op slechts vijf minuten wandelen van het historische centrum. Deze unieke locatie laat gasten toe een waaier van historische attracties en bezienswaardigheden op een makkelijke manier te ontdekken. Van het beroemde Belfort, dat ver uitsteekt boven de befaamde ‘Grote Markt’, tot de aanzienlijke gotische schoonheid van het stadhuis. Voeg daar nog de romantische grachten, die zich een weg banen doorheen de authentieke straatjes aan toe, en je begrijpt waarom Brugge een stad is waar je op slag verliefd op wordt.

Het stijlvolle design van het hotel, ontworpen door Crepain Binst Architecture uit Antwerpen, past perfect bij het ‘verfijnde’ Brugge. Het interieur weerspiegelt de typische Radisson Blu kenmerken. Er werden ook lokale details opgenomen doorheen het hele hotel: zo is er onder andere in alle kamers een reliëfdruk van het stadsplan op de muren te bewonderen, met een knipoog naar enkele van Brugge’s meest populaire attracties.

Naast de 109 gastenkamers (waaronder ook 19 familiekamers), heeft het Radisson Blu Hotel Brugge ook een specialiteitenrestaurant, ‘Black Swan’, dat het allerbeste uit de Belgische keuken serveert. Uiteraard ontbreken de Belgische bieren, gin en Brugse chocolade niet op de kaart. Stuk voor stuk producten waar België met reden wereldberoemd voor is.

Ontdek het beste van Radisson Meetings in één van de zes vergaderzalen, verspreid over twee verdiepingen, waaronder de ruime 12de verdieping die een adembenemend uitzicht biedt over de stad. Radisson Meetings stelt de gast centraal en behandelt elke vergadering of evenement op een zeer persoonlijke en professionele manier, met altijd een toegewijde contactpersoon ter plaatse. Elke vergaderzaal heeft zeer snelle en gratis WI-FI verbinding en moderne A/V technologie.

Kris De Man, General Manager van Radisson Blu Hotel, Brugge zegt: “Mijn team en ik kijken er enorm naar uit om het design, de innovatie en onze ‘Yes I Can! Spirit’ van Radisson Blu over te brengen aan onze gasten op deze unieke locatie. Het is voor ons een droom die uitkomt om in één van de mooiste steden ter wereld een Radisson Blu hotel te mogen openen. Wij kunnen niet wachten onze gasten te ontvangen en deze stad als een ware ‘local’ te laten ontdekken. Welkom & ontdek het beste van Brugge met Blu.”

Voor meer informatie over Radisson Blu Hotel, Brugge, bezoek: