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Official Visit to Hungary by Stanisław Karczewski, Marshal of the Senate of Poland

Stanisław Karczewski magyarországi látogatása 20160912-13 1Stanislaw Karczewski, the Marshal of the Senate of Poland, led a delegation on an official visit to Budapest on 12-13 September 2016. During his visit, Marshal Karczewski held talks with Speaker of Parliament László Kövér and was received by Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and President of the Republic János Áder. He met members of the Hungarian-Polish Friendship Group and met separately with Zsolt Németh, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, and Richárd Hörcsik, Chair of the European Affairs Committee.

 

In their meeting, László Kövér emphasised – in addition to the historic bonds dating back one thousand years – the importance of cooperation in the present and in the future. Stanislaw Karczewski spoke highly of the meeting in Krynica the previous week, calling the televised, public meeting there between Viktor Orbán and Kaczynski significant. He spoke with appreciation for the exemplary treatment Hungary’s leaders have demonstrated toward national minorities. Marshal Karczewski and the Hungarian Speaker of Parliament reviewed the joint proposal for the establishment of a V4 Parliamentary Assembly as well as the concerns the Czech Republic has voiced in the matter. In agreement, the Speaker and the Marshal emphasised the need to intensify cooperation between the two parliaments and to continue regular high-level dialogue between the two bodies. The Polish party proposed regular meetings, in addition to those bringing together parliamentary speakers, between governing-party deputy speakers and other parliamentary leaders.

In meetings in Budapest, Karczewski noted that, in addition to its efforts in the V4, Poland is open to cooperating with the countries of the Adriatic and the Black Sea. The Polish party affirmed their support for the Hungarian proposal to establish dialogue between committees dealing with Hungarians and Poles living beyond their countries’ borders.

Deputy Speaker Latorcai Participates in Europe of the Carpathians Conference

Latorcai János a Kárpátok Európája konferenciánDeputy Speaker of Parliament János Latorcai participated in the Europe of the Carpathians Conference hosted in Krynica in southern Poland on 6-8 September 2016. Speakers of parliament from the V4 countries spoke at the opening session of the conference under the title “The Visegrád Group: Current Challenges and New Forms of Cooperation”.

Prior to the event, speakers of parliament from V4 member states conducted separate talks on further developing V4 parliamentary cooperation, and held a short bilateral consultation with the Slovak speaker of parliament.  Zsolt Németh, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee, and Richárd Hörcsik, Chair of the European Affairs Committee, attended the event.

 

At their meeting, the V4 speakers of parliament agreed that recent new conflicts and challenges, as well as the problems the region is facing, have underscored the importance of further bolstering cooperation in general, including parliamentary cooperation. They noted shared historical experiences, a shared identity and shared values. They encouraged future chairmanships of the Group to hold similar informal meetings of speakers of parliament prior to meetings of heads of state or government in the European Council. In addition to those between EU committees, they proposed regular consultations and meetings between defence, economic or cultural committees as well. They also agreed that there is a need for a common voice, quick and flexible cooperation and the harmonisation and steadfast representation of V4 positions. At the same time, they also noted that it is necessary to take specific steps in order to solve the question of migration, which today presents the greatest challenge.

 

At the conference, as well as at the meeting of V4 speakers of parliament preceding it, there was agreement among the four Visegrád partners on keeping the establishment of a V4 Parliamentary Assembly on the agenda, and before that is achieved, on further broadening and increasing the intensity of cooperation. Further consultations are expected on the specific forms this may take.

Official Visit to Hungary by Milan Štěch, President of the Senate of the Parliament of the Czech Republic

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Milan Štěch, President of the Senate of the Parliament of the Czech Republic, paid an official visit to Hungary on 20-21 April 2017 at the invitation of Speaker of Parliament László Kövér. He was accompanied by Pavel Štohl, Vice Chair of the Committee on National Economy, Agriculture and Transport; Zdenĕk Nytra, Vice Chair of the Committee on Public Administration, Regional Development and the Environment; and Zuzana Baudyšová, a member of the Committee on Education, Science, Culture, Human Rights and Petitions.

 The visit of the President of the Senate of the Czech Republic included a meeting with Speaker of Parliament László Kövér and the Czech-Hungarian Friendship Group of the IPU (Inter-Parliamentary Union). President Štěch was received for a courtesy call by President of the Republic János Áder, and had meetings with Minister of Interior Sándor Pintér and Minister of Defence István Simicskó.

In their meeting, László Kövér and Milan Štěch agreed on emphasising the intensity of parliamentary relations, the harmony of positions observed in political meetings and the broadening of cooperation and economic relations between the two countries. They reviewed their positions concerning the most pressing matters on the agenda of the European Union, touching on, inter alia, efforts made to stem illegal migration, the future of the EU, the post-2020 multi-year budgetary framework, Brexit negotiations and matters related to the reinforcement of border protection. The two speakers agreed on the importance of representing V4 interests in a coordinated fashion at the EU level. They praised the effectiveness of V4 cooperation. The Czech President formulated criticism vis-à-vis certain southern states for their inadequate protection of the Schengen borders. Agreeing, the two speakers noted that the global migration crisis is the most serious challenge the EU is facing at the moment, and underscored the critical role and performance of Turkey in the matter.  Discussing further opportunities for bilateral and V4 cooperation, the two speakers highlighted the necessity for quicker and more effective coordination on EU matters. They agreed on the transfer of Hungarian experience in the field of electronic processes in public administration.

 

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