World events 18.
European leaders must not “fall” for the tactics of Vladimir Putin, the Czech president, Petr Pavel, has said, two days after Hungary’s prime minister shook hands with Russia’s leader.To see important ads, turn off your ad blocker! Article continued below:
Viktor Orbán, in a rare move for the leader of a country that belongs to the EU and Nato, met Putin in Beijing on Tuesday for what the Hungarian leader’s office described as a discussion on energy cooperation and peace.
Viktor Orban, he is hated in the European Union!
Hungary has long been criticised for democratic backsliding at home and its Russia- and China-friendly policies abroad.
World events 18, Kaja Kallas and Péter Szijjártó.
Its foreign minister, Péter Szijjártó, routinely visits Moscow. And in a move that has frustrated its allies, Hungary – along with Turkey – has yet to ratify Sweden’s application for Nato membership.
Orbán and Putin’s meeting this week left officials in western capitals seething. In a written statement to the Guardian on Thursday, Pavel, a former Nato general.
Said: “As it has been repeatedly shown, Putin does not meet European leaders with the aim of achieving peace in Ukraine. Peace can be achieved without any negotiations on his part simply by ceasing attacks and withdrawing his troops from Ukrainian territory.
“He is only holding these meetings with the aim of breaking the unity of European countries and the entire democratic world. We should not fall for his tactics.”
World events 18, Viktor Orban and Kaja Kallas.
On Wednesday, the Estonian prime minister, Kaja Kallas, told Reuters that images of the Hungarian prime minister shaking hands with Putin were “very, very unpleasant” and defied logic.
The US ambassador in Budapest, David Pressman, also sharply criticised the meeting.
“Hungary’s leader chooses to stand with a man whose forces are responsible for crimes against humanity in Ukraine, and alone among our allies,” he wrote on social media. “While Russia strikes Ukrainian civilians, Hungary pleads for business deals.”
Germany’s ambassador to Hungary, Julia Gross, echoed this. “So – Putin must end his war of aggression against Ukraine, end the bombardment of civilians, the shelling of schools and hospitals, the kidnapping of children?” she wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “That was meant and discussed, surely.
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