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Left-Wing Opposition: Hungarian Government Should Not Negotiate With Vladimir Putin

Tamás Székely 2015.02.16.

The opposition Democratic Coalition’s (DK) leader insists that the visit to Budapest by Russian President Vladimir Putin represents a failure in Hungarian diplomacy. Former Socialist PM Ferenc Gyurcsány told a news conference that ever since the November G20 meeting in Australia no European leader had been inclined to meet Putin in a bilateral context. The Budapest visit is purely in Putin’s interest, since it was a way of demonstrating the breaking of the “boycott” against him, the former Socialist PM said.

DK expects Hungarian PM Viktor Orbán to make clear that “his peacock dance between Moscow, Brussels and Berlin” has come to an end “because Hungary has committed itself to its alliances within the European Union”. Gyurcsány argued that Hungary does not have a vested interest in signing a gas-purchase agreement with Russia. Rather, the 28 EU member states should jointly come to an agreement and, in this way, achieve considerably more favourable conditions, Gyurcsány said, adding that the Russian president should be told politely that the period in which Hungary exclusively does deals with Gazprom has come to an end.

Earlier last week, the opposition Socialists (MSZP) called on Viktor Orbán’s government not to conclude yet another “disadvantageous energy pact” with the Russian president. According to the Socialists, Hungary does not need another long-term pact, one on gas deliveries with Russia. Concluding such a pact with fixed gas prices would be “insane”, the MSZP’s deputy group leader Bertalan Tóth said. Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is “lying” when he says that Hungary needs Russian gas, Tóth said, insisting that under the current long-term agreement Hungary is receiving sufficient amounts until 2019-2020. Alternative routes are in place for Hungary to get gas from western Europe, and the country has natural gas sources of its own as well.

Instead of serving Hungary’s interests, the new agreement would “be another private deal between Viktor Orbán and Vladimir Putin,” the Socialist politician said. needs Russian gas, Tóth said, insisting that under the current long-term agreement Hungary is receiving sufficient amounts until 2019-2020. Alternative routes are in place for Hungary to get gas from western Europe, and the country has natural gas sources of its own as well. Instead of serving Hungary’s interests, the new agreement would “be another private deal between Viktor Orbán and Vladimir Putin,” the Socialist politician said.

Hungary signed an agreement with Russia for the upgrade of its sole nuclear power plant at Paks in January last year. As it is well-known, Vladimir Putin is scheduled to pay an official visit to Hungary on Tuesday, February 17. Looking forward to the visit, the Hungarian foreign minister said Vladimir Putin’s visit to Budapest could be crucial from the point of view of maintaining secure energy supplies to Hungary.

via hungarymatters.hu photo: Zoltán Máthé – MTI


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