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European Pravda: Orbán in a letter to EU leaders promotes Russia’s “peace for Ukraine”

After his meeting with Zelenskyy in Kyiv, Orban met with Putin in Moscow and wrote about it in a letter to EU leaders, mentioning that Putin discussed Ukrainian military losses in detail but did not talk about Russian casualties at the front.
isw hungarian pm orbán appears augmenting russian info ops victor president vladimir putin moscow 5 july 2024 ria novosti orban meets
Hungarian PM Victor Orbán and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow, 5 July 2024. Photo: RIA Novosti.
European Pravda: Orbán in a letter to EU leaders promotes Russia’s “peace for Ukraine”

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán wrote a letter to European Council President Charles Michel and EU leaders following his visit to Russia, in which he relayed Russian propaganda points about “peace for Ukraine,” according to European Pravda, who got access to this letter.

Orbán’s visit to Russia comes after he first came to Kyiv and met Ukraine’s President Zelenskyy. He proposed a temporary ceasefire to accelerate peace negotiations with Russia, which Zelenskyy rejected.

European Union High Representative Josep Borrell clarified that Orbán’s visit had no EU mandate despite Hungary recently assuming the rotating presidency of the EU Council.

Orbán assured that during the visit, he “did not make any proposals or express any opinion on behalf of the European Council or the European Union,” according to European Pravda.

The Russian authorities are confident that “time is not on Ukraine’s side, but on the side of Russian forces,” Orbán wrote in the letter.

He also writes that Putin did not mention Russian losses at the front but spoke at length about his estimates of Ukrainian losses, which Orbán quoted as 40-50 thousand per month.

In February 2024, Zelenskнy said that Ukraine lost 31 thousand military killed, while in 2023, American sources reported 70 thousand dead and 120 thousand wounded Ukrainian soldiers.

Orbán stated that the President of Russia was surprised that Zelenskyy rejected a temporary ceasefire, European Pravda reports.

Russia’s “peace negotiations”

Orbán added that Russia (according to Putin) is only willing to agree to the conditions defined in a document called “Treaty on Permanent Neutrality and Security of Ukraine” during the negotiations in Istanbul in April 2022. It states that in case of an attack on Ukraine, which would be in a neutral status, the guarantor states (including Russia) would provide assistance to preserve Ukraine’s security; however, at the same time, having the right to veto a military aid. Ukraine did not agree to this.

The letter also mentions that Russia is considering the so-called peace proposal from China and Brazil, which calls for “peace talks” between Ukraine and Russia without mentioning the need to restore Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty.

Orbán also expressed his view that the United States, preoccupied with its election campaign, may not be in a position to provide political leadership on peace in Europe in the near future. As a result, he suggested that Europe should consider launching its own initiative, guided by the principle of “strategic autonomy,” according to European Pravda.

After the visit to Moscow on 5 July, the Hungarian Prime Minister arrived in Beijing, China, on 8 July to meet with Chinese leader Xi Jinping and discuss potential resolutions to the ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war.


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