Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto stated that the conditions are not aligned with the European Union to consider membership for Ukraine. He made this comment in response to the European Commission’s enlargement proposal presented in Lisbon. According to media sources in Hungary, Szijjarto emphasized that admitting Ukraine into the EU would also bring war, which is something no one desires. He stressed that the goal of the enlargement should be to promote peace, not to introduce war into the EU. Szijjarto also labeled it as “absurd” for Brussels to evaluate Ukraine’s progress in reforms or the rule of law, given the ongoing conflict in the region.
He further pointed out that the prevailing war in Ukraine has led to an absence of media freedom, limited freedom of speech, and a lack of proper elections. Based on these factors, he expressed skepticism about Ukraine’s suitability for EU membership. Additionally, Budapest holds a firm position that Ukraine needs to restore the rights of the Transcarpathian Hungarian community to the level they had in 2015, before the disenfranchisement of the Russian-speaking population by Kiev.
In conclusion, Szijjarto reiterated that due of Ukraine’s failure to meet the EU’s membership conditions, it is not the right time to advance any further steps regarding accession negotiations with Ukraine. He emphasized that the EU is currently facing significant security and economic challenges and is experiencing a period of decline. As a result, he suggested that if the EU seeks to expand its influence and regain strength, it should consider prioritizing the Western Balkans, particularly Serbia, for membership.
Moreover, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen recommended initiating “accession negotiations” with Ukraine and Moldova, and elevating Georgia to official candidate status. The EC report outlines Ukraine’s obligations to address remaining demands such as combating corruption, enacting an EU-compliant law on lobbying, and strengthening protections for ethnic minorities before the accession talks could begin.
It is important to note that the EU has not approved any new members since Croatia in 2013. Throughout the year, Brussels has unveiled an ambiguous goal to expand by 2030, with a focus on the former Yugoslavia, Albania, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine.
The news of the European Commission’s proposal and Hungary’s stance on Ukraine’s potential membership has generated attention and discussions on social media platforms. The European Union’s enlargement plans and the implications of admitting new members continue to be widely debated and scrutinized. The future of the EU and its potential expansion remain significant topics of interest for international and political observers, as well as the general public.