Trump-Orban meeting can be near

The most important goal of the American diplomacy ahead of the meeting of Hungarian FM Peter Szijjarto and the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was to convince Hungary to act proactively against Russian aggression in its region, Heather A. Conley, senior vice president for Europe, Eurasia, and the Arctic and director of the Europe Program at CSIS told Hungarian daily Nepszava.

According to Conley, when Assistant Secretary of State Wess Mitchell visited Budapest last week, he tried to convince the Hungarian government to soften its position towards Ukraine – the dispute is about Ukraine’s education law -, and judging by Szijjarto’s remarks after meeting his Ukrainian counterpart in New York, he might have succeeded.

She said it’s more and more likely that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban will be invited to the White House. According to Conley, the future of bilateral relations is “in the hands of the Hungarian government”.

 Szijjarto: Central Europe, US ‘natural allies’

The United States once again considers the central European region as its “natural, strategic ally”, Szijjarto told public television M1 on Friday.

Referring to recent talks with Mike Pompeo, his US counterpart, Szijjarto said that during the Obama administration central Europe had been “off the positive agenda” of US diplomacy, but “now it has changed”.

Illegal migration, fighting terrorism, security policy, United Nations reforms and “balanced” policies towards Israel are “all areas where (the two countries’) interests are clearly identical”, Szijjarto said.

The minister said that the US has “greatly contributed to easing conflicts with Ukraine arising from (that country’s) violating minority rights”.

Prior to meeting Pompeo, Szijjarto had met his Ukrainian counterpart in New York and agreed to set up an inter-governmental team to monitor Ukraine’s implementing the Venice Commission’s recommendations concerning the Ukrainian education law. “There is hope for a solution,” he said, and added that the Ukrainian education minister had launched consultations with the ethnic Hungarian community while a meeting would soon be held between the education minister of the two countries and ethnic leaders.

Source: Hungary Journal/MTI
Photo: Reuters

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