Aid to Ukraine – The next act of EU blackmail has begun

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Aid to Ukraine – The next act of EU blackmail has begun

Hungary wants to buy its consent for aid to Ukraine. The tug-of-war continues at a special summit in January. However, the twelfth sanctions package against Russia was approved.

“Why do I care about my chatter from yesterday?” This quote is attributed to former German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, but also applies to Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán. While the Prime Minister said at the start of the EU summit on Thursday that it is not his style to link Hungarian interests to the Ukraine issue, he sounded very different on Friday. Orbán bluntly made his approval of further aid to Ukraine conditional on the release of blocked EU funds for his country. Hungary demands “not half, not a quarter, but everything,” Orbán said. So there is still around €20 billion that Brussels is withholding due to shortcomings in the rule of law and allegations of corruption.

Ten billion euros and a German trick
Orbán has already had success with his blackmail tactics at the summit. He had announced that he would block accession negotiations with Ukraine. Apparently the EU got involved in the Hungarian poker game: just one day before the heads of state and government met, Brussels released ten billion euros for Hungary. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz then reached into his bag of tricks and convinced Orbán to leave the room during the vote – so the EU unanimously gave the green light for accession negotiations. Olaf Scholz, otherwise not exactly known for his humor, was in a good mood on Friday and quite humorous: “It is not something you have to do every time, but something for special moments,” he said about his trick, with which the Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte called it ‘brilliant’.

If necessary, Brussels has a Plan B and a Plan C
But Orbán is now doing everything he can and continuing his blackmail – at the expense of everyone in Europe. The other 26 EU countries agreed to increase the multiannual financial framework, which also includes an additional €50 billion for Ukraine (see video above). Hungary should now change its mind at a special summit in January. The question is whether this can be achieved without a new financial donation to Budapest. In any case, Scholz is confident. And in Brussels we hear that there is both a Plan B and a Plan C. If necessary, aid to Ukraine could also be agreed outside the EU budget, without Hungary.

Austria: reservations about Raiffeisen?
Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer was particularly pleased with the change in the financial framework plan; significantly more redeployments are now planned instead of fresh money. The summit also decided on the twelfth sanctions package against Russia. Austria initially resisted – because of Raiffeisen, it was heard. The government reportedly urged Ukraine to remove the banking group from the list of “international war sponsors.” After the summit, Chancellor Nehammer said: Austria had agreed to the sanctions package, so it was also accepted. “Raiffeisen Bank International was absolutely not a topic in the Council of Heads of Government,” said Nehammer.

Source: Krone

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