HUNGARIAN PRESIDENCY : PM ORBAN: TASKS FACING EU 'NOT COMPLICATED, JUST DIFFICULT'.

Just before his country took over the rotating Presidency of the European Union, on 1 January, Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban was keen to minimise the difficulty of the task ahead for the bloc.

Fully aware that "an optimistic era" in the EU is over, he acknowledged that "Europe stands before its most difficult year in the era since the fall of Communism". After having come back to power in Hungary in May 2010 and thus attended the Council summits that took place since then, Orban recalled being "received by faces marked by worry, foreheads wrinkled with concern, speeches about the insecure future, statesmen and stateswomen urging help and retreating into crisis talks". Nevertheless, he finds cause for hope. "The task that the European Union is facing is not complicated; it is just difficult," said the Hungarian statesman in a greeting posted on the rotating Presidency website, on 29 December 2010.

Orban hopes to build upon the...

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