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Hungary's actions may cost top EU leadership their positions - Politico

Hungary's actions may cost top EU leadership their positions - Politico Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban (Getty Images)
Author: Liliana Oleniak

Concessions to Hungary on Ukraine's membership could cost top EU officials their jobs, Politico reports.

According to the agency, Hungary and its pro-Russian Prime Minister Viktor Orban are already resorting to outright blackmail of the EU.

To prevent the country from blocking Ukraine's membership in the EU, the bloc's long-term budget, and migration, the European Commission intends to give Hungary access to billions of EU funds that have been frozen by Brussels over concerns about the independence of the judiciary.

Some EU countries see the Hungarian threats as a way to get more money from the European Commission, and while conceding to Orban now may ease the situation in the short term, it could undermine the EU in the long run.

The agency emphasizes that allowing Orban to have his way will also anger the European Parliament ahead of next year's EU elections and further dismissals from top positions, including for European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen if she seeks re-election.

Hungary blocks Ukraine's accession to the EU

A summit of EU leaders will take place on December 14-15. It will discuss several issues related to Ukraine. In particular, the start of negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the EU, as well as the provision of €50 billion in economic support and another €20 billion for Ukraine's army. In addition, a new package of sanctions against Russia is on the agenda.

According to media reports, Hungary will block anything related to supporting Ukraine. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, while in Argentina, was able to talk to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban on the eve of the EU leaders' summit.

European media speculate that the start of Ukraine's accession negotiations may be postponed to March 2024 because of Hungary.