Concerning the war in Ukraine, Orbán said Hungary “must stay out” of it, partly because of the Hungarian minority in Ukraine, “partly because war is always bad … several hundred [ethnic] Hungarians have died already as soldiers in the Ukrainian army,” he said. So far, he said “the war has only made losers” with both adversaries and also the European economy on the losing side.
Hungary has suffered serious damage and paid “sanctions-related surcharges”, he said, adding that in 2023 nearly all European countries would face the challenge of how to avoid recession “arising directly from the war and Europe’s participation in the war which they call sanctions”. Hungary must “not allow itself to be dragged into the war”, while a large part of Europe “has been dragged into it”, he said. Countries sending weapons to the warring countries are in the war “ankle-deep” and those training soldiers of one of the adversaries are “knee-deep”, while those providing operational training are “up to the waist” in the conflict, he said. Those financing one of the countries in terms of not only its war-related costs “but the operations of the state, as the EU is doing with 18 billion euros” are “in the war up to the shoulders”, he insisted, adding he hoped that Europe would not get involved “up to the neck”.
Despite huge international pressure, Hungary has maintained its position calling for an immediate ceasefire and peace talks, he said.
Meanwhile, Hungary has met its “humanitarian and Christian” obligations to help those in trouble and the country launched its so far largest humanitarian programme to help the Ukrainian people, the prime minister said.