Hungary wants at least half a billion euros for protecting borders: PM

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban speaks during a joint news conference with Bulgaria's Prime Minister Boyko Borissov in Sofia, Bulgaria, February 19, 2018. REUTERS/Stoyan Nenov (Reuters)

BUDAPEST (Reuters) - Hungary wants at least half of the more than 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) it has spent on border protection to be reimbursed from European Union funds, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said on Friday. "We have spent over 1 billion euros on border protection. We are not only protecting ourselves, but Europe as well. At least half of this sum should be reimbursed," Orban said in a video posted on his Facebook page ahead of a summit of European leaders in Brussels. He also said Hungary would propose to EU leaders a "red card" procedure to enhance the sovereignty of national parliaments that would give national parliaments the power to stop debates in Europe if they are perceived to be violating the national interest.($1 = 0.8131 euros) (Reporting by Krisztina Than and Gergely Szakacs; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)