July 14, 2024

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Albares explains that Orban met Putin on a bilateral basis and cautions: “He did not go to Moscow on behalf of the EU.”

Albares explains that Orban met Putin on a bilateral basis and cautions: “He did not go to Moscow on behalf of the EU.”

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, European Union and Cooperation, José Manuel Albares, rejected the idea that the meeting held by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán last week with Russian President Vladimir Putin was on behalf of the European Union. He also asked Budapest to be careful and not to fall into “ambiguity” and to distinguish between bilateral meetings and those held on behalf of the G27. Asked in an interview with RNE broadcast by Europa Press, the minister said: “Of course he flies freely and makes trips that have no key other than a bilateral key, they do not represent Europe, of course.” Whether Orbán’s meetings are with Putin or with Chinese President Xi Jinping, in his capacity as President of the European Council. Spain, according to the head of diplomacy, “does not support the trips that Orbán made as European trips,” nor do the European institutions. Of course, the Hungarian Prime Minister “has every right in the world” to make bilateral trips “as he sees fit,” but of course “not to speak on behalf of Europe.” “He did not go to Moscow in the name of Europe, that should be very clear, the President of the Commission (Ursula von der Leyen), the High Representative (Josep Borrell) and of course the European governments have made it very clear,” Albares continued, calling for reflection and clarification “what the Presidency of the Council of the European Union can and cannot do.” After recalling the “very successful Presidency of the European Council” that Spain held last year, the Foreign Minister stressed the importance of “being careful and not falling into ambiguity” when a country takes on the task, “and clearly distinguishing when one speaks on behalf of the 27 and when one acts bilaterally.” Celebrating the results in France Asked about the result of the legislative elections in France, in which the left-wing New Popular Front coalition won, and Marine Le Pen’s National Group came in third, Albares congratulated himself on “stopping the far right.” “We see that in a very few days in two key countries, like the United Kingdom and France, pluralism, tolerance and the rule of law are triumphing,” the foreign minister said, celebrating the French people’s rejection of the “extreme right” and their choice of “progressive forces”.

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