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Hungary Halts New EU Sanctions Against Russia – Reports

© Sputnik / Stringer / Go to the mediabankHungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban arrives to take part in the inaugural meeting of the European Political Community
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban arrives to take part in the inaugural meeting of the European Political Community - Sputnik International, 1920, 15.02.2024
Hungary's firm opposition to rubber-stamping yet another package of anti-Russian sanctions ruined European Union (EU) plans, the Financial Times reports.
The EU's 13th package of sanctions against Russia has hit the usual stumbling bloc of Hungary.
The draft of the new round of sanctions included measures against Moscow's international partners including China, Serbia, Turkiye and India.
“Hungary was the sole naysayer at a meeting of EU ambassadors yesterday that otherwise would have signed off on the sanctions package, which targets almost 200 people and entities from Russia, China and other countries,” the Financial Times, based in former EU member the UK, reported.
An unnamed official revealed that Budapest "did not agree due to [the targeting of] Chinese companies."

Another EU official, privy to the discussions, noted that the Hungarian ambassador requested “a bit more time to analyze the content of the proposals”.

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Discussions will continue, officials said, and likely be taken up by ministers from the 27 EU member states at next week's meetings.
Several diplomats, who preferred to remain anonymous, said they did not expect the delay would prevent sanctions being agreed before the symbolic date of February 24 — the second anniversary of the launch of the Russian military operation to defend the Donbass region and de-Nazify Ukraine.

From the start of the Ukraine conflict, Budapest has consistently advocated for a ceasefire and peace negotiations, consistently refusing to supply the Kiev regime with arms. Hungary has also advocated against imposing comprehensive sanctions on Russia as they would backfire on the struggling EU economy.

Despite external pressure, the Hungarian government has also maintained economic ties with Moscow, for which the country has been subjected to harsh criticism and threats for its refusal to follow the EU foreign policy line.
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