European Union and Hungary clash over Ukraine aid

Various officials in Brussels did not hide their irritation with the Hungarian government’s position, amid rumors of possible retaliation.

Hungary’s veto of a huge aid package for Ukraine led to increased diplomatic tensions between Brussels and Budapest on Monday, just three days before an extraordinary summit to discuss this financial support.

Before a meeting of European Affairs ministers, various officials did not hide their irritation with the Hungarian government’s position, amid rumors of possible retaliation.

“It is no coincidence that the EU member country that most violates our common values (…) is also the member country that is still outside the EU consensus on the issue of aid to Ukraine,” lamented the secretary. German State Minister for European Affairs, Anna Luhrmann.

For this reason, Luhrmann called for “toughening” the instruments available to the EU to force Hungary to respect the rule of law.

One of these instruments is the application of Article 7 of the EU Treaty, which involves the suspension of the rights of a country in the bloc for “serious and persistent” infringements of democracy or the rule of law.

Vera Jourova, vice president of the European Commission, noted in turn that it will be necessary to see “if the leaders have enough patience to negotiate with [Hungarian Prime Minister] Viktor Orban or if they take a new path using Article 7.”

A European summit held in December failed to reach consensus on an aid package for Ukraine worth around 50 billion euros ($54 billion) due to the Hungarian veto, and that is why the new summit was called for Thursday and Friday of this year. week.

This Monday, an article in the Financial Times newspaper claimed that the EU had prepared a document that would ask European leaders to deprive Hungary of all the funds that correspond to it, if the veto on aid to Ukraine is not lifted at the EU summit. week.

The Hungarian Minister of European Affairs, Janos Boka, reacted angrily and in a message on Facebook assured that “Hungary will not give in to blackmail!”

An official EU source clarified this Monday that the mentioned document was only a working note on the Hungarian economy drawn up by the European Council secretariat.

On the other hand, Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó insisted today during his first visit to Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian invasion that Kyiv must grant more rights to the country’s Magyar minority if it wants relations with Budapest to improve. .

As announced by the Ukrainian Foreign Minister, Dmitro Kuleba, both agreed this Monday on the creation of a bilateral commission to resolve, within ten days, the disagreements of both parties on the issue of the Hungarian minority in Ukraine.

In a more optimistic tone, Kuleba described the atmosphere of the meeting as “open, sincere” and “constructive”, and highlighted that the two delegations showed their willingness to “close this issue in good faith.”

Share this news
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments