Michel seeks compromises. Hungary continues to escalate situation with Ukraine's membership
Viktor Orbán and Charles Michel (Photo: EPA)

On the eve of the summit of EU leaders, the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, told the heads of state that they should come to Brussels with a "spirit of compromise" and a "sense of collective responsibility" amid the controversy over the start of negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the union. This was reported by The Guardian.

The issue of the start of EU accession negotiations with Ukraine should be decided in December at the EU summit; this decision needs the unanimous approval of all 27 member states.

He stated that the union should fulfill its obligations towards Ukraine and continue "to be a reliable and strong partner".

"We must provide Ukraine with continued and sustainable political, financial and military support and, in particular, come to an agreement on providing €50bn for its long term stability," the President of the European Council emphasized.

Michel noted that the EU should agree to open accession negotiations with Ukraine, thereby "giving it a necessary signal and bringing it yet closer to our European family."

According to him, now is the time to make decisions. Michel called on the heads of state to come with a spirit of compromise and a sense of collective responsibility.

Read also: Euractiv: EU may postpone start of Ukraine's accession talks to March 2024 due to Hungary

On November 10, 2023, Prime Minister of Hungary Viktor Orbán stated that the country has a "clear position"—there  should be no negotiations regarding Ukraine's accession to the European Union.

He later threatened to block all European Union aid to Ukraine, as well as the country's future entry into the bloc, unless EU leaders agreed to review their support strategy for Ukraine.

On December 6, the party of the Hungarian Prime Minister, Fidesz, submitted a resolution to the parliament with a call not to support the start of negotiations on Ukraine's accession to the European Union.

On December 12, representatives of the Hungarian community of Transcarpathia appealed to Orbán and the President of the European Council, Michel, with a request to admit Ukraine to the negotiations on joining the EU.

  • On December 11, Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba met with his Hungarian colleague Peter Sijarto for the first time since the beginning of the Great War. Kuleba said that at the summit of the European Council, which will be held on December 14-15, Western leaders will consider four issues related to Ukraine and its European integration.
  • President Zelenskyy met and spoke briefly with Hungarian Prime Minister Orbán in the guest box of the Parliament of Argentina.