In an interview with German liberal-conservative magazine Tichys Einblick, during his recent visit to Berlin, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán spoke about the EU’s security policy, the war in Ukraine, EU foreign policy and domestic politics in Hungary.
Shortly before the interview, PM Orbán met with prominent German politicians including the Chancellor of Germany, Olaf Scholz. According to PM Orbán, the talks were very productive, adding that talking to Chancellor Scholz is like talking to a Hungarian. "We have different positions on many topics, but we are close on strategic issues,” he said.
Reflecting on the challenges the European Union is facing today, the prime minister told Tichys Einblick that the exit of the United Kingdom rocked European politics and a process of disintegration can be observed within the Union, adding that “it is better to have the Union than not to have it, and that is why we are trying to counteract this disintegration.”
When asked about the ongoing war in Ukraine, PM Orbán said that “we don't want war. We want an immediate ceasefire and negotiations. Because a thousand hours of negotiation is better than a single bullet.” PM Orbán added that more than 200,000 ethnic Hungarians are living in Western Ukraine, out of whom 200 had already lost their lives in the conflict as they were drafted into the Ukraine Armed Forces.
Regarding the conflicting views on the growing federalist sentiment among the members of the European Union, PM Orbán said that “it is a mistake to see the issue of European federalism in black and white.” In his view, certain aspects are better handled on a national level, but he also noted that “there are issues in which we only remain relevant as a united Europe. One such issue is defense.”
The Hungarian prime minister criticized the EU for its lack of common defense policy, and armament coordination, stating that “we must discuss the question of a European army,” noting that “as continental Europe, we would have to work together here in order to jointly defend and assert our interests.”