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Hungary's FM opposes NATO's long-term Ukraine aid plan, calls it 'crazy mission'

by Kateryna Denisova and The Kyiv Independent news desk May 9, 2024 12:04 AM 2 min read
Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto attends the 26th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF) in Russia on June 15, 2023. (Sefa Karacan/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
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Budapest will not participate in NATO's long-term plan to support Ukraine, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said on May 8, calling it a "crazy mission," according to Reuters.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg proposed in April to create a $100 billion five-year fund to aid Ukraine in order to get the allied countries more involved in providing Kyiv with weapons.

According to the plan, NATO would also reportedly take over some operational duties of the U.S.-led Ukraine Contact Defense Group, which coordinates weapons deliveries from about 50 countries to Kyiv.

"Hungary will stay out of NATO's crazy mission despite all the pressure," Szijjarto said at an event in London, reiterating the Hungarian government's position.

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Budapest has consistently opposed sanctions on Russia, undermined Western aid efforts for Ukraine, and maintained close relations with Moscow throughout the full-scale war.

Ukraine has faced a worsening situation on the battlefield in recent weeks as well as an increase in successful Russian aerial attacks, both compounded by delays in Western assistance, particularly the months-long wait for the latest U.S. aid package.

The European Union also fell short of its target of providing Ukraine with 1 million rounds of artillery shells by March.

During Stoltenberg's visit to Ukraine in late April, President Volodymyr Zelensky said that partners "do have the opportunity" to set up a $100 billion fund.

"The details are very important to us, it is important that this is not at the expense of bilateral volumes, which are marked by our agreements on security guarantees," he added.

NATO military chair: ‘It’s not too late for Ukraine,’ Russia’s progress limited
Lieutenant Admiral Rob Bauer, Chair of the NATO Military Committee, said the most important thing now was that members of the military alliance continue to send aid.

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