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Orban threatens to upend EU leaders' summit over Ukraine aid

Orban threatens to upend EU leaders' summit over Ukraine aid Viktor Orban (Getty Images)
Author: Maria Kholina

The Prime Minister of Hungary, Viktor Orban, is threatening to derail the December summit of European Union leaders, where assistance to Kyiv and the start of negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the EU will be discussed, according to Bloomberg.

According to the report, Hungary said during last week's diplomatic meeting that it wants to conduct a strategic discussion on the financial support to Ukraine by the EU and how Russian sanctions have affected EU countries before even considering additional financial aid or security commitments.

Hungary is also blocking negotiations on Ukraine's accession and the mid-term review of the EU budget. Orban's confrontational tone suggests that he is no longer concerned about threats to cut funding from Brussels.

The President of the European Council, Charles Michel, will visit Budapest today to meet with Orban, but EU officials are preparing for the worst.

Hungary's stance on Ukraine

Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban holds an openly pro-Russian position, often making statements discrediting Ukraine.

Since the start of the full-scale war, Hungary has not provided military assistance to Ukraine and also blocks EU sanctions against Russia. In addition, Budapest continues to engage in trade with Russia, while representatives of the Hungarian government visit Moscow.

EU officials announced last month that the bloc is considering providing assistance to Hungary to secure Budapest's support for Ukraine. However, recently, sources from Bloomberg involved in preparing the EU leaders' summit, scheduled for December 14-15 to discuss Ukraine, expressed growing skepticism about the influence that can be exerted on Orban.