Szijjártó: A long way to a meeting between Zelensky and Orban – Ukraine must fulfil conditions
Peter Szijjártó (Photo: EPA)

Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said that there is still a long way to go before a meeting between Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. He emphasized that before that, Ukraine must fulfill all the conditions provided by Hungary, Reuters quoted him as saying.

According to journalists, on January 30, during a briefing after the meeting in Uzhhorod, Szijjarto said that if Ukraine fulfills Hungary's conditions, it will create a "clean slate" in bilateral relations and allow for a summit meeting.

In particular, he confirmed the change in the Hungarian government's position announced by the Hungarian prime minister today and said that Budapest is open to using the EU budget for the proposed €50 billion aid package for Ukraine, as long as it is reviewed annually and requires unanimity of EU member states.

Read also: FM Kuleba told Hungary's Szijjártó why there is no point in negotiations with Putin now

During a meeting in Uzhhorod on January 29, Szijjarto said that the Hungarian side had formulated an 11-point request to Ukraine regarding the rights of national minorities. In particular, the country asks the Ukrainian side to return the rights to its national minority that it enjoyed until 2015.

The Hungarian foreign minister also spoke about the process of restoring trust between the two countries, which may take a long time. He believes that the countries have "a long way to go to restore trust."

Міністр зовнішньої економіки та закордонних справ Угорщини Петер Сійярто відвідав Україну з візитом (Фото: ОП)
The Minister of Foreign Economy and Foreign Affairs of Hungary Peter Szijarto paid a visit to Ukraine (Photo: OP)

On December 21, 2023, Orban said that he had approved Zelenskyy's invitation to hold a bilateral meeting "at some point in the future," but "one question remains to be clarified: what [to talk about]?"

According to Ihor Zhovkva, deputy head of the Presidential Office, the potential talks will concern bilateral relations between Ukraine and Hungary – "it is a wide range, and it is not limited to minority issues."

On December 28, Szijjártó said that work was underway to organize a meeting between President Zelenskyy and the Hungarian prime minister, but that Budapest would not change its "peaceful" position.

Read also: Hungarian FM did not say anything bad, although he could have done – Ukrainian FM Kuleba