ua en ru

EU ready for radical response to Hungary blocking aid to Ukraine

EU ready for radical response to Hungary blocking aid to Ukraine EU ready to respond harshly to Hungary blocking aid to Ukraine (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

The European Union government is ready for radical actions if the Prime Minister of Hungary, Viktor Orban, continues to block the aid package for Ukraine, according to Bloomberg.

According to sources in the EU government, 26 member countries are prepared to accept the military aid package for Ukraine at the summit in Brussels on February 1, regardless of Hungary's support.

Officials added that preparations for such a scenario are already well underway, the report says.

A potential alternative would be for the remaining member countries to provide military funding to Ukraine outside the EU budget process.

Sources say that if the head of the Hungarian government chooses this path, the EU may initiate the next stage of punitive measures against Budapest, which could lead to the suspension of its voting rights as a member country.

Bloomberg suggests that broader conflicts within the EU government may ensue, taking into account warnings from the Prime Minister of Slovakia, Robert Fico.

Last week, the Slovak leader warned colleagues that he would defend Hungary against any potential steps aimed at depriving Orban's government of its rights within the bloc.

Blocking €50 billion from the EU for Ukraine

In mid-December 2023, at the summit of European Union leaders, Hungary blocked the decision to allocate €50 billion to Ukraine for the years 2024-2027.

Now the issue of aid to Ukraine will be considered at the EU summit on February 1. At the same time, Prime Minister Viktor Orban threatens to block it. Budapest demands concessions from the EU in exchange for approving the package.

Against this backdrop, the European Parliament has initiated the collection of signatures for a petition to strip Hungary of its voting rights in the EU Council, and the required number of signatures has already been collected.

Also, on January 17, the head of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, expressed confidence that all EU members would approve the €50 billion aid for Ukraine.

The day before, Prime Minister of Lithuania Ingrida Simonyte expressed hope for the possibility of reaching an agreement on a €50 billion support package for Ukraine, despite Hungary's objections.

For more details on how the EU is negotiating with Ukraine and whether Orban will lose his veto rights, please refer to RBC-Ukraine's article.