Hungary’s central bank bought 200,000 bullets and 112 firearms to protect itself against what it describes as an increase in international security risks.
In response to a Hungarian lawmaker’s question about the need for the arms, Governor of the National Bank of Hungary Gyorgy Matolcsy, said in a statement that the need came from an increased “international security risk” from terrorism, bomb threats, and immigrants.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and his right-wing Fidesz party have been some of Europe’s strongest opponents of an immigration influx into Europe in recent years. Last year Hungary constructed a wall along its border with Serbia to stem the influx of migrants who were traveling through Hungary on their way to Western Europe.
The National Bank of Hungary has previously come under scrutiny for its acquisitions of fine-art works, such as the $15.8 million purchase of a 16th century work by Titian, and luxury real-estate. The bank is also spending nearly $700 million to fund economics education in a bid to correct “outdated neoliberal” views.
The unconventional spending by the bank has been criticized by prominent economists with the Hungarian Academy of Sciences which said earlier this year that “Public money is being used by the central bank without control,” Bloomberg reported.