The reform of the Hungarian military, under way since 2016, “actively contributes to efforts aimed at increasing Europe’s defence capabilities and its defence industry”, the defence minister said in Brussels on Tuesday.
Speaking after a meeting of his European Union counterparts, Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky said without NATO ensuring security and “in the wake of the sanctions against Russia” the EU was vulnerable in terms of energy supplies and defence.
The minister called for efforts to “build a more prepared EU”, adding that “Hungary continues to play an active role” in increasing the EU’s military capabilities. He added that the Hungarian government purchased its defence supplies mostly from European firms.
Concerning the meeting, focusing on the war in Ukraine, the minister regretted that “talks aimed at achieving a ceasefire and settling the conflict are not in sight”. He said that unfortunately the situation was not suitable for the parties to start talks, while “it would be in the interest of European people”.
Referring to a new European mission to reinforce the capabilities of the Ukrainian military (EUMAM Ukraine), Szalay-Bobrovniczky said the Hungarian government had a “reserved position”, adding that any move involving international participation could threaten an escalation of the situation and impact the security of Hungarians.
“Aid should be provided on a bilateral basis as Hungary has been doing since the start of the war through the greatest humanitarian effort in its history,” the minister insisted.