Hungary supports the strengthening of the role of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which operates as the last channel of East-West dialogue in peacebuilding, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said on Thursday in Budapest.
According to the ministry’s statement, during a joint press conference with Bujar Osmani, the Foreign Minister of North Macedonia, who currently holds the OSCE chairmanship, Szijjártó emphasized that maintaining dialogue between the parties is the only way to achieve peace in Ukraine.
‘We Hungarians, living here in the vicinity of the war, want peace, we want peace as soon as possible,’ he stated. ‘Every day that passes with war brings more casualties and more destruction.
The propaganda that better conditions can be negotiated on the battlefield for a peace agreement is false.
The conditions for peace negotiations are much better today than they will be tomorrow, and they are already worse today than they were yesterday,’ he pointed out.
He underlined that the government strongly supports North Macedonia’s presidency in strengthening the OSCE’s role as a communication channel between East and West, between Russia and Western Europe in peacebuilding. ‘Any effort that strengthens the role of the OSCE in peacebuilding is supported by Hungary and the Hungarian government,’ he emphasized.
Szijjártó urged the start of genuine European Union accession negotiations for Albania and North Macedonia. He emphasized that Europe is facing extraordinary economic and security challenges, making the stability and peace of the Western Balkans more crucial than ever. ‘And we, who live in the neighbourhood of the Western Balkans, perhaps understand this situation better than anyone else,’ he noted. He stated that today, it is even more in the EU’s interest to expand than in the Western Balkans’ interest, as the bloc is unfortunately weak and getting weaker. ‘We can only reverse this by making the European Union grow because if it becomes larger, it will also become stronger, and this can only be achieved through enlargement,’ he explained.
He highlighted that the reason for the previous expansion failures is that
neither Brussels nor some member states are sincere about it. They publicly support the process but express scepticism behind closed doors.
‘That’s why it’s unacceptable to us that the President of the European Council wants to postpone the admission of new members until 2030,’ he said.
The minister posed the question of what the EU intends to do during these seven years. ‘If NATO, as a defence alliance, could admit three Western Balkan countries, I think the European Union should also be capable of doing so,’ he said.
Addressing questions from reporters, Szijjártó confirmed that the government does indeed intend to purchase Budapest Airport, and negotiations are ongoing, but it is too early to disclose details. He stated that the ownership of Hungary’s largest airport is a ‘strategic issue.’
Regarding the ratification of Sweden and Finland’s NATO membership, he called it legitimate to raise the issue that the inclusion of these two countries would extend the border between Russia and the North Atlantic Alliance by several hundred kilometres. Nevertheless, the government has submitted a proposal to the Hungarian Parliament for approval.
Sources: Hungarian Conservative/KKM/MTI