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Hungarian PM Orban hails Trump victory as 'great news'

Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban arrives to the meeting of heads of government Central and Eastern European countries and China in Riga, Latvia, November 5, 2016. REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

BUDAPEST (Reuters) - Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban congratulated U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump on his election victory on Wednesday, with the words “What a great news. Democracy is still alive” posted on his Facebook page.

Orban said in July that Trump’s plans on migration and foreign policy were “vital” for Hungary, whereas those of rival Democrat Hillary Clinton were “deadly”.

Orban was then the first European head of state to express a clear preference for either of the two candidates.

Orban has in the past upset fellow members of the European Union over policy, most recently with his tough stance on Europe’s migrant crisis, objecting to EU resettlement plans and having a fence built along Hungary’s southern border.

“The migration and foreign policy advocated by the Republican candidate, Mr Trump, is good for Europe and vital for Hungary,” Orban said in July.

Reporting by Krisztina Than; Editing by Toby Chopra