Hungarian news portal Telex has interviewed one of Ukraine’s most influential politicians, Volodimir Zelenskiy’s advisor Mykhailo Podolyak. Among other things, they discussed why Hungary is still friendly with Russia, despite what has been going on for almost seven months.
“I am surprised that Russia still has partners in Europe who do not understand what this war that Russia is waging is like,” Podolyak said, referring to the Hungarian government. Instead of being interviewed by Telex staff, the Ukrainian politician was interviewing them in the beginning. Podolyak asked what the government had in mind when it suggested that the parties (Ukraine and Russia) should sit down at the negotiating table.
Of course, there is no good answer to that question. Podolyak also previously called Viktor Orbán a Trojan horse sent to destroy the EU because of his vetoes against EU sanctions against Russia.
According to the Ukrainian politician, Putin also expected a blitzkrieg at the beginning. Ukraine will quickly collapse, and the Russian president will sit down at a table with his friends and solemnly announce that he is ready to share parts of Ukraine. However, he does not believe that anyone has seriously considered Putin’s possible territorial offers. Podolyak considers it a conspiracy theory that Hungary wants to change borders.
“It would be empty propaganda to talk about this demand, I don’t think it has ever been raised by Hungary at any theoretical level. The negative consequences of denying international law would far outweigh the benefits of acquiring territory. Hungary would not deny the international legal order in which it lives, and there is no point in wasting words on this,” Zelenskiy’s advisor told Telex.
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The Hungarian government might play on pro-Russian sentiments, hoping to benefit from the way it communicates with the Russian authoritarian political system, which could even bring cheap energy. […] Hungary could be much more effective if it recognised that Russia’s authoritarian system of governance is historically extremely ineffective. Such countries end up in tragedy in any case,” he added.
Hungary continues to talk about Brussels’ “botched sanctions”, but Podolyak is more cautious than before about the government: “It is simply that Hungary is slower to reassess this.”
Read alsoHungary still keeps embassy in Kyiv open after brutal Russian attacks
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