Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has called on his country to prepare for war in the event the turbulent economic situation across Europe triggers a conflict in the continent.
“If this continues, sanctions will rock Europe, the continent’s economy will fall to its knees, people could be in danger, and it seems we need to prepare for a protracted war,” Orban said on Saturday during an oath-taking ceremony for voluntary military recruits as cited by Sputnik News.
“We, Hungarians, need a deterrent army, ready to strike, able to guarantee peace, because those who are not ready to act and are not disciplined cannot be successful, those who have no strength will have no truth, and those who have no faith will have nothing to fight for,” he then added.
“We cannot bury our heads in the sand like ostriches,” Orban further stated. “We have to face reality.”
His remarks came amid Budapest’s persisting opposition to the EU’s sanction policy against Russia, as Brussels slapped several rounds of bans on Moscow since it started its “special military operation” in Ukraine in February in response to NATO’s efforts to expand further towards Russian borders.
The sanctions have exacerbated fuel market issues, leading to a major energy crisis across Europe, with record-high inflation and skyrocketing cost of living.
Orban had declared back in March that Hungary would enhance its military capabilities in the next decade as only a powerful national army can ensure the country’s security, insisting that European nations should not only rely on the US for its defense requirements.
The German armored fighting vehicle Lynx, equipped with a machine gun and an anti-tank missile, was displayed during the ceremony on Saturday.
According to Hungary’s Defense Ministry, German company Rheinmetall Landsysteme will supply the country with 46 Lynx vehicles by 2023, with 172 expected to be domestically-produced by 2029.