Photo Credit: Amos Ben Gershom / GPO
Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with his Hungarian counterpart in Jerusalem on Tuesday, congratulating Prime Minister Viktor Orban on the decision to expand the Hungarian Embassy in Israel, and to open a trade representation in Jerusalem with diplomatic status.

“Prime Minister Orban and I meet almost on a regular basis. Every opportunity that we meet we take on the task of fortifying even further the excellent relations between Hungary and Israel. They are growing in every direction: economically, in terms of security, diplomatically. I have to commend you for taking on the effort, and your foreign minister, for confronting the lies that are put forward against Israel in places like the Human Rights Committee in EU forums and elsewhere. You stand up for Israel and you stand up for the truth and I want to thank you for it. It is a very important alliance,’ Netanyahu said.

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“Today we spoke about further ways to increase our cooperation in security and intelligence. We also discussed the opportunities to increase our cooperation in trade, science, technology, health, the environment and many others.

“I commend you for adopting the IHRA definition against antisemitism. You did that yesterday. That’s important. I want to thank you for deciding to extend the embassy of Hungary in Israel to Jerusalem. That is to have an extension in Jerusalem that deals with trade. This is important. It’s a sign of our friendship and it’s also a place that can welcome you to Jerusalem next time you come here,” Netanyahu added.

Orban noted that the 30th anniversary of the reestablishment of Hungary’s diplomatic ties with Israel was recently celebrated. ” I would like to express our respect to the Israeli people and at the same time to Prime Minister Netanyahu because he played an important … role to reenergize and reopen the cooperation between Central Europe and Israel,” he said.

“Hungary is still continuing to support the Hungarian Jewish community as we did in the recent years. And one of the good examples of the future that hopefully the Maccabi games will be one of the best and beautiful games in this history and hopefully we can deal with the security aspect together.

“Finally, I just informed the Prime Minister that the Hungarian government decided that to open a trade representation here with diplomatic status. So we will have an official presence in Jerusalem as well. So I hope it will be a good step forward to improve even more the relationship between the Israeli people and Hungary.

“You said welcome to Israel. My message is welcome to Budapest which is your city as well.”

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