Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said Hungary is “on the side of peace” and “will support any peace plan”.
“We don’t know which [plan] will succeed, but unless we take the first step we will never achieve peace,” the prime minister told journalists on the sidelines of a meeting of leaders of the Centrist Democrat International in the Slovenian resort of Bled. PM Orbán said some saw an opportunity for a militarist settlement of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, while others saw no such chance and called for a ceasefire and peace talks. “The real nature of the conflict has not yet been revealed; some consider it a proxy war, and others talk about a real war between the parties,” PM Orbán said. It is not known which peace plan has a chance of succeeding, so Hungary backs all initiatives and is prepared to aid the process either as a mediator or as a venue for ceasefire negotiations, he added. PM Orbán said Hungary’s stake in the war set it apart from countries in the region given the Hungarian minority living there and the Hungarian lives sacrificed, a “personal national loss” for Ukraine and Hungary alike.
Explaining why Hungary has blocked further payments from the European Peace Framework fund, PM Orbán said that the funds had been designated for European security, not for the war in Ukraine, with a view to boosting security throughout Europe. Most of the funds are being used to support Ukraine, he said, adding that Hungary wants to clarify whether the fund serves its original purpose or whether it is being channelled to supporting Ukraine. The Centrist Democrat International’s meeting is being held under the motto “Security, Justice, Peace”, and Orbán is participating as one of its vice presidents.