Zelensky keeps up with Orban in Argentina


(MENAFN) Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky has utilized the inauguration of Argentina's new leader, President Javier Milei, as an opportunity to engage in a brief conversation with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban. The encounter, captured in videos shared on social media and the Argentine Senate's YouTube channel, showcases Zelensky and Orban in intense discussion during the event in Buenos Aires. The nature of their conversation remains undisclosed as the videos lack audio.

Zelensky's chief of staff, Andrey Yermak, revealed on Wednesday that efforts were underway to arrange a formal meeting between Zelensky and Orban. The Hungarian Foreign Minister, Peter Szijjarto, responded by indicating that such a meeting would only be pursued if there were prospects of a "positive outcome."

The backdrop of this diplomatic outreach is Orban's potential role in obstructing a crucial aid package for Ukraine from the European Union (EU). The European Union's proposed plan involves providing EUR50 billion (USD54.4 billion) in economic aid and EUR500 million in military assistance to support Ukraine in its ongoing conflict with Russia. Orban, as a member of the European Union, holds the power to veto these proposals and has recently advocated for a reconsideration of the bloc's policies toward Ukraine, including its aid commitment and the country's potential accession to the European Union. Notably, Orban has expressed skepticism about Ukraine's ability to achieve a military victory over Russia.

As tensions mount over the European Union's aid package, a European Union summit scheduled later this week in Brussels is expected to address the issue. Initial plans included a vote on whether to initiate formal membership talks with Ukraine, but reports suggest that the decision may be subject to postponement. The outcome of Zelensky's diplomatic efforts with Orban could significantly impact the trajectory of European Union-Ukraine relations, influencing both financial aid and the broader geopolitical landscape in Eastern Europe.

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