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The European Parliament’s foreign affairs committee has approved Hungary’s Commissioner-designate for Neighbourhood and Enlargement, Olivér Várhelyi.

The approval came after parliamentary group coordinators found satisfactory Várhelyi’s responses to additional written questions submitted following a hearing last week. EP spokesman Jaume Duch said on Twitter that the foreign affairs committee had backed Várhelyi’s candidacy with a two-thirds majority as required for his approval as commissioner. Commenting on his approval by the committee, Várhelyi tweeted: “What an honour to become part of team Ursula von der Leyen! For stronger Europe together!” The EP’s Conference of Committee Chairs is expected to review the evaluations and recommendations given for the commissioner candidates and bring a formal end to the hearings on Thursday.
In reaction to Várhelyi’s approval, the Government Information Centre said the Hungarian opposition’s “scheming” to prevent Hungary from sending a commissioner to Brussels had failed. “The government welcomes that the European Parliament’s foreign affairs committee has supported Várhelyi’s appointment as European commissioner,” the centre said in a statement.