In the latest episode of The Bold Truth About Hungary podcast, host Zoltán Kovács, state secretary for international communication and relations, spoke with Defense Minister Kristóf Szalay-Bobrovniczky about the Ukraine war and the lessons learned from it. Let's take a closer look.
Defense Minister: Hungary committed to peace throughout Russia-Ukraine conflict
"The brutal aggression of Russia on Ukraine brought a new reality really in security and in security planning and everything that we do," the defense minister said.
"The brutal aggression of Russia on Ukraine brought a new reality really in security and in security planning and everything that we do," the defense minister said. "And as you know, the viewers certainly have heard that Hungary has been committed to peace all throughout this conflict and we have been probably the government that emphasized the most and the most frequently the importance of peace talks and eventually coming to peace. It's important on many, many levels," he said.
"But the Polish example, an accidental strike of a rocket killing innocents shows that while the conflict is open and armed and ongoing, anything can really happen. And of course, we on the Hungarian defense side so do everything possible to protect our citizens and our borders as I'm sure the Polish friends do also. But such accidental spillovers cannot be really totally excluded. And that, as you very rightly say, in those moments it was very important that strategic calm takes over in everybody's minds and we were in very close contact with the NATO leaders and defense ministers throughout Europe and there were a few hours when no one could know what exactly happened. And that was actually quite tense minutes. But as I could talk to many of my colleagues and the facts came to light, it was very clear that no one was interested, thank God, in the escalation of the conflict, therefore it calmed down and then the facts which came out proved that this was the right path. Also, you mentioned the Nord Stream event, which was clearly an escalatory step or the bombing of the bridge, which again was an escalatory step and there have been many. So, I'm still not very calm in that respect whether the war is about to settle down, it is actually sadly not. The winter may slow things down a little bit, but so far there is no clear military outcome on either side, so I'm afraid it is going to carry on and a lot more lives will be lost therefore there is nothing else other than encouraging peace and calling everybody's attention to the avoidance of potential escalatory steps but to build a strong national army, which we are doing by the day," the minister concluded.