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A Special NATO Member: Hungary Seeks to Avoid Future Operations Beyond the Alliance

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Photo: A Special NATO Member: Hungary Seeks to Avoid Future Operations Beyond the Alliance. Source: Victor Orban's Facebook
Photo: A Special NATO Member: Hungary Seeks to Avoid Future Operations Beyond the Alliance. Source: Victor Orban's Facebook

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has announced that his country is considering a "reassessment" of its NATO membership to avoid participating in future operations outside the Alliance and to reduce support for Ukraine. This was reported by Bloomberg.

According to Orban, Hungarian military and legal experts are already working on a new concept that will distinguish Hungary from other NATO members.

"Our lawyers and officers are diligently working on how Hungary can maintain its NATO membership in such a way that it will not have to participate in NATO actions beyond the Alliance's territory," Orban said.

It is worth noting that Hungarian troops are currently involved in two NATO missions outside the territory of its member states — in Iraq and Kosovo. While participation in such missions is not mandatory for NATO members, it is generally encouraged by the bloc's leadership and leading nations.

Orban's statement comes as the Alliance is developing a support package for Ukraine, which will be presented at the NATO leaders' summit in Washington in July. This package is expected to include increased NATO coordination in the supply of arms and training for Ukrainian forces.

In the interview, the Hungarian Prime Minister emphasized that his country remains committed to NATO's mission of protecting Alliance members in the event of an attack. However, he expressed concern that funding and supplying weapons to Ukraine, which is not a NATO member, could lead to greater military involvement, potentially including the deployment of troops.

Orban also mentioned that Hungary does not agree with the assessment of some NATO members regarding the potential for Russia to invade the Alliance's eastern flank after Ukraine, viewing the current conflict as a war between "two Slavic countries."

He added that NATO has established working groups to examine the possible expanded role of the Alliance in the Russia-Ukraine war. Hungary participates in these discussions, but effectively as a "non-participant" opposing financial aid and arms supplies to Ukraine. A formal exemption for Hungary from these obligations would signify a new approach to Hungary's NATO membership, Orban noted.

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