Copyright © 2024 Euromaidanpress.com

The work of Euromaidan Press is supported by the International Renaissance Foundation

When referencing our materials, please include an active hyperlink to the Euromaidan Press material and a maximum 500-character extract of the story. To reprint anything longer, written permission must be acquired from [email protected].

Privacy and Cookie Policies.

Hungary openly helping Putin destabilize Ukraine

Orban and Putin
Hungary openly helping Putin destabilize Ukraine
Edited by: A. N.

Budapest has announced that it has handed out Hungarian citizenship papers to 94,000 people in Transcarpathia in Western Ukraine in expedited fashion, an action that creates yet another challenge for Kyiv and may very well have been coordinated with Moscow.

The Hungarian official responsible for nationality policy says that this is part of a broader effort to boost the size of the country’s population and points out that two-thirds of the more than 710,000 new Hungarians are from Transylvania in Romania and 17 percent are from the Voevodina in Serbia and only 14 percent are from Transcarpathia.

All three areas have been targeted by the Gabor Betlen Foundation, as reported by the Russian news agency Regnum, and all three are being destabilized by its actions, but the Russian agency does not mention that aspect of Budapest’s actions.

In a Ukrainian-language commentary today, however, Mikhail Pozhivanov, a former deputy in the Verhovna Rada and a former Ukrainian deputy economics minister says exactly that, adding that while “Transcarpathia is not the Donbas,” it is a place where Moscow with Budapest’s help hopes to destabilize the situation.

Hungary has been fishing in these troubled waters for some time, he writes, pointing to Hungarian political support for the Transcarpathian Rusins and the fact that one of that group’s leaders, who operated under the cover of a Russian Orthodox priest, was accused of promoting separatism by the Yanukovych regime and subsequently found guilty of that.

Over the past year, Moscow commentators have suggested that Hungary should take the lead in offering citizenship to ethnic Hungarians in Ukraine and even recognizing some kind of Transcarpathian “republic” there, possibly on the model of the “LNR” and “DNR” statelets Moscow has set up in eastern Ukraine.

Budapest has not been slow to respond to that idea, but its role in the Transcarpathia has expanded dramatically since the election of Victor Orban as prime minister and the visit of Vladimir Putin to the Hungarian capital, during which the Russian president stressed the common ties and interests of Moscow and Budapest in Ukraine, according to Pozhivanov.

Budapest recognized the Russian Anschluss of Crimea, and it has been an active opponent of EU sanctions against Russia for its intervention in Ukraine. But the most dangerous thing it has done may be its stirring up of the Hungarian minority in the western part of Ukraine, something that forces Kyiv to divide its attention, the Ukrainian commentator says.

To argue that Hungary will succeed in creating a serious territorial challenge to Ukraine “would be an exaggeration,” Pozhivanov says. But to ignore the problem would also be a mistake, especially given Hungary’s actions and the all too obvious ways in which Budapest is coordinating them with Moscow.

Edited by: A. N.
You could close this page. Or you could join our community and help us produce more materials like this.  We keep our reporting open and accessible to everyone because we believe in the power of free information. This is why our small, cost-effective team depends on the support of readers like you to bring deliver timely news, quality analysis, and on-the-ground reports about Russia's war against Ukraine and Ukraine's struggle to build a democratic society. A little bit goes a long way: for as little as the cost of one cup of coffee a month, you can help build bridges between Ukraine and the rest of the world, plus become a co-creator and vote for topics we should cover next. Become a patron or see other ways to support. Become a Patron!

To suggest a correction or clarification, write to us here

You can also highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter

Please leave your suggestions or corrections here


    Will the West continue to support Ukraine?
    • Know what moves the world.
    • Premium journalism from across Europe.
    • Tailored to your needs, translated into English.
    Special discount
    for Euromaidan Press readers
    Euromaidan Press

    We are an independent media outlet that relies solely on advertising revenue to sustain itself. We do not endorse or promote any products or services for financial gain. Therefore, we kindly ask for your support by disabling your ad blocker. Your assistance helps us continue providing quality content. Thank you!

    Related Posts