Human traffickers exploiting Hungary’s generosity towards minors says undersecretary

August 4, 2016


Bence Rétvári, undersecretary at the Ministry of Human Resources, says an orphanage in Fót where young asylum-seekers are staying may be unwittingly part of a human-trafficking operation funded by billionaire philanthropist George Soros.  In an interview given to Hungarian state radio channel Kossuth Rádió, the politician claimed it was being used by human traffickers as a kind of way station for transporting young migrants to Western Europe.

Just north of Budapest, the town of Fót houses a children’s home for orphans. Since the start of the migration crisis last year, it is also home to a number of unaccompanied migrants under the age of 18 arriving in Hungary. Last year, according to Rétvári, 3500 foreign children were taken to Fót, none of whom possessed documents proving their age.

The children's home in Fót

“Apart from Denmark, Hungary is the only country that caters for the needs of migrant children on the same level it does for Hungarians,” he said. Rétvári claims many asylum-seekers are taking advantage of this.

The politician added that children at Fót can use wi-fi, meaning they can contact relatives the moment they set foot in the children’s home. He went on to claim that their parents or siblings then engage human traffickers to smuggle the children from Fót to Western Europe.

“We have found papers written in Urdu telling asylum-seekers how they can get to Fót, usually by claiming they were under 18,” Rétvári said.

Speaking about the leaflets, the undersecretary said he has no idea where they are from but he suggested NGOs supported by Soros were distributing documents urging asylum-seekers to claim they are minors.

There will be a protest

Fót has long been a place of controversy. A few weeks ago new security measures were implemented after a fight broke out between Afghan and Pakistani children. Three of them were taken to hospital with minor head wounds.

Last week, state secretary Károly Czibere announced that the government plans to expand the capacities at Fót, so more under-aged asylum-seekers can be accommodated there. Speaking to Hungarian daily newspaper Magyar Nemzet, Sándor Bartos, the mayor of Fót, said the decision was a complete disaster.

“The city will protest,” he added.

Town leaders claimed they were not previously informed of the plans to house more under-aged asylum-seekers.   Meanwhile residents of Fót have been complaining about the behavior of young migrants for months. Interestingly, nobody at the town council knows how many under-age asylum seekers are staying at Fót, as not even Hungarian MPs are allowed to enter.