Hungarian Member of Parliament and Foreign Ministry State Secretary Tamás Menczer of the governing Fidesz party took to social media to respond to statements made by US Ambassador to Hungary David Pressman. Ambassador Pressman has recently given two interviews to two British papers, one to the Financial Times and one to The Guardian. In both pieces, he was very critical of the foreign policy of the incumbent Orbán administration.
Over the weekend, the Turkish Parliament approved Sweden’s accession, with President Erdoğan signing the ratification. This leaves Hungary the last NATO country yet to approve of the alliance’s new member state, a state of affairs which Ambassador Pressman described as ‘disappointing’. He also told The Guardian: ‘Hungary is really alone—and it doesn’t need to be’.
He also went on to say that Hungary’s foreign policy is based on ‘fantasy,’
such as the rejection of the EU leadership in Brussels and Hungarian American financier George Soros trying to influence domestic politics in Hungary, which he deems to be baseless fears.
Pressman also claimed that he had seen numerous instances of judges being intimidated in Hungary, of which he cited no specifics; and criticized the establishment of the Sovereignty Protection Office as ‘a serious step backwards in Hungary’s democracy’.
While talking to the Financial Times, the ever-critical Ambassador reiterated his claims that Hungary’s foreign policy is supposedly based on fantasy, and also accused Viktor Orbán and his administration of helping President Vladimir Putin of Russia in his war efforts in Ukraine.
Tamás Menczer Responds to Ambassador Pressman
State Secretary Tamás Menczer posted a video to his Facebook page on Friday, 26 January, in which he addresses the statements made by Ambassador Pressman. He said:
‘If US Ambassador to Hungary David Pressman would like to give us a lecture once again about Hungarian foreign policy, he should answer a couple of questions first: how is it possible that last year, in 2023, Russia became the largest exporter of uranium in the United States? How is it possible that last year, in 2023, the United States spent over $1 billion on uranium in Russia? How is that possible? We are waiting for the answers from the American ambassador.’
The State Secretary is correct,
the Russian imports of enriched uranium, the key element of nuclear-reactor fuel, more than doubled in the first half of 2023 in the US,
despite the Biden administration’s condemnation of Russian aggression in Ukraine, and the barrage of sanctions levied at the Eastern European country as well. This is something Balázs Orbán, the political director for the Prime Minister of Hungary, also pointed out back in October 2023.