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NATO Secretary General meets Hungarian Prime Minister in Budapest

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NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg met with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in Budapest on Wednesday (12 June 2024) to discuss preparations for the Washington Summit.

The parties held a press conference. Mr Orbán began the press conference by saying that he was pleased that relations between NATO and Hungary had been strengthened during Jens Stoltenberg’s term as Secretary General. He said that 1,300 Hungarian soldiers were taking part in the organisation’s various operations. The Prime Minister said that Hungary was fulfilling its commitments to NATO.

On the Russian-Ukrainian war, Orbán said that Hungary’s position differs from that of others. He explained this by the fact that the country does not have the capacity or the strength to change the widely differing opinions.

« That is why I do not wish to block decisions that are shared by others. Any military action outside NATO territory must be voluntary under NATO rules. This was confirmed by the Secretary General” – Mr Orbán said.

Jens Stoltenberg stressed that Hungary has always been a respected member of NATO, and that the country also hosts important military headquarters. He also pointed out that Hungary supports stability in the Western Balkans and has been providing shelter to people from war-torn countries since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Jens Stoltenberg believes that this contributes to common security. He also said that NATO has undergone perhaps its most significant transformation since 2014.

Mr Stoltenberg commended Hungary’s commitment to Allied security, including its leadership of a NATO multinational battlegroup; its hosting of military headquarters, including Multinational Division Centre; and its contributions to the KFOR peacekeeping mission in Kosovo.

He further welcomed that since the start of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine, Hungary has provided shelter for Ukrainian refugees and helped to rehabilitate wounded Ukrainian soldiers. “All of this contributes to our shared security, and I welcome your statement that you will remain a dedicated and loyal NATO Ally,” he said.

Mr Stoltenberg underlined that when Allies meet at the Washington Summit in July, he expects them to agree on a leading role for NATO in coordinating and providing security assistance and training for Ukraine, as well as a long-term financial pledge to provide military support.

“Prime Minister Orbán has made it clear that Hungary will not participate in these NATO efforts and I accept this position,” he said. “At the same time, the Prime Minister has assured me that Hungary will not oppose these efforts, enabling other Allies to move forward, and he has confirmed that Hungary will continue to meet all of its NATO commitments in full,” the Secretary General concluded.

EU Briefs publie des articles provenant de diverses sources extérieures qui expriment un large éventail de points de vue. Les positions prises dans ces articles ne sont pas nécessairement celles d'EU Briefs.

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