EU civil war erupts as one country blocks £7bn of aid for Ukraine: ‘Insane!’

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun12,2024

The European Union is once again divided as Hungary continues its efforts to block aid to Ukraine.

Diplomats in Europe have been pushing for a new €6.6billion package (£5.6billion) package as foreign and defence ministers from across the continent prepare to meet in Brussels this week.

Included in the package is €860million (£732million) for arms procurement.

But the deal has been blocked by Hungary, setting the bloc up for another standoff over support for Ukraine.

One senior EU diplomat reacted to Hungary’s stance by telling Politico: “I have to calm myself [when] I talk about this issue, because it’s getting really ridiculous now. What’s happening is outrageous.”

READ MORE: Orban calls for new NATO rule as he claims ‘Hungary being shot in back from EU’

Hungary, under the leadership of controversial Prime Minister Viktor Orban, has blocked some of the arms reimbursements via the off-budget European Peace Facility (EPF) over the last year.

The backlog of arms that were destined for Ukraine but have been stopped by Budapest has now reached €9billion’s worth (£7.6billion

Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó told other European ministers on Monday that Ukraine is treating Hungary’s businesses unfairly because one was named on Ukraine‘s list of war sponsors.

Szijjártó warned that compulsory conscription across Europe is an “insane” idea despite no EU members having such plans.

Now, ministers from across Europe are voicing their anger at Hungary.

Danish Foreign Minister Lars Løkke Rasmussen told Politico: “I would urge Hungary to unblock the EPF.

“We have been discussing this for not only a month but almost years … There’s no reason to uphold this veto.”

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis added: “We have to be transparent as to what Hungary’s position currently is, and has been.

“We looked into this and apparently about 41 percent of resolutions by the EU on Ukraine have been blocked by Hungary. The EPF is blocked … Ukrainian accession talks [are] being held hostage by Hungary and I could go on.

“Almost all of our discussions and needed solutions and decisions by the EU are being blocked by just one country. So we have to start seeing this as a systematic approach towards any efforts by the EU to have any meaningful role in foreign affairs.”

After Russia‘s invasion of Ukraine, a number of nations have raised concerns that Vladimir Putin could launch an attack on them next.

The Baltic countries – Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania – have been especially outspoken regarding their security fears.

But Hungarian leader Orban dismissed this threat last week, saying: “I do not consider it logical that Russia, which cannot even defeat Ukraine, would all of a sudden come and swallow the Western world whole.

“The chances of this are extremely slim.”

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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