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Media: Hungarian official claims West should give Russia security guarantees, reject Ukraine's NATO bid

by Dinara Khalilova and The Kyiv Independent news desk September 3, 2023 4:37 PM 2 min read
Minister of Prime Minister's Office Gergely Gulyas speaks during a press conference on Nov. 9, 2018 in Budapest. (ATTILA KISBENEDEK/AFP via Getty Images)
This audio is created with AI assistance

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban's chief of staff Gergely Gulyas said that to achieve peace in Ukraine, the West "must give security guarantees to Russia, but definitely not NATO membership to the Ukrainians," the Hungarian public broadcaster MTVA reported.

Speaking at a university event, Gulyas claimed that Russia does not pose a threat to Central Europe since the Russian army "did not achieve rapid and resounding results" in Ukraine, as cited by the Hirado news program.

The Hungarian official also alleged that Ukraine is unlikely to liberate its territories occupied by Russian forces.

According to Gulyas, efficient negotiations between Kyiv and Moscow can only take place with Washington's participation, while long-term peace efforts would need to include the deployment of peacekeepers and other similar decisions.

Ukrainian authorities have not yet commented on Gulyas' statement.

Exclusive: New insights point to Hungary’s collaboration with Moscow on transfer of Ukrainian POWs
In early June, a bizarre and mysterious joint operation was carried out between two of Ukraine’s neighbors, one to the east and one to the west. Eleven Ukrainian soldiers, after having been held in Russian captivity for an unknown amount of time, were moved from Russia to Hungary. Although

Hungary has been at odds with Ukraine and the West over its amicable stance towards Russia, even amid the full-scale war. PM Orban has said that Ukraine is a financially "non-existent" and "no longer sovereign" state due to its "dependence" on international support.

Hungary has repeatedly blocked the European Union's financial support for Ukraine.

At an Aug. 31 meeting, EU foreign ministers failed to agree on the eighth tranche of €500 in military aid to Ukraine under the European Peace Facility.

Budapest blocked the provision of funds, vetoing aid on the grounds that Ukraine has designated the Hungarian OTP Bank an international sponsor of war.

Survey: 41,4% of respondents think Hungary could make territorial claims against Ukraine
As many as 41,4% of Ukrainians believe Hungary could make territorial claims against Ukraine, according to an exclusive survey conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology in February.
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