Balazs Orban - Photo:

Political director: Only diplomacy can end Russia-Ukraine war

Unlike belligerent Brussels, Hungary's standpoint is that the Russia-Ukraine war can only be ended through diplomacy for which a ceasefire is a precondition, Balazs Orban, the prime minister's political director, said in Brussels on Thursday.
21. March 2024 17:44

An increasing number of people in Brussels are discussing aspects of support for Ukraine that risk the outbreak of a third world war, a “doomsday scenario”, the official told Hungarian journalists on the opening day of the European Union summit.

“What’s at stake is serious,” the PM’s political director said.

He said that several statements by “serious leaders of Brussels and member states” had come to light in recent days that pushed events “in a direction that Hungary has been trying to avoid for two years”, piling on pressure to involve NATO troops in the war in Ukraine and risking the war’s escalation.

Peace talks “must start as soon as possible”, he said, adding that political leaders in Brussels should “pull away from the current spiral of escalation”.

Orban noted Hungary’s stance on sending weapons to Ukraine: “We do not support sending weapons in any context or within any procedure. We are unwilling to make Hungary party to the war.”

Also, if proposed sanctions were to conflict with Hungary’s fundamental national interest, “we will stop those too”, he said.

He said Europe should be able to defend itself and guarantee its own security. But given its reliance on others whose geopolitical interests differed from its own, he added, Europe was in a position of strategic weakness.

Developing Europe’s military industry and armed forces would be crucial in terms of fortifying European sovereignty, he said, adding that Hungary would partner with any initiative at European level that advanced Europe’s military industry and armed forces.

The June European parliamentary election could result in the predominance of pro-peace politicians in the EP, and this could possibly determine what happens in respect of the war in Ukraine.

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