European Peace Facility Top-up Cleared With Hungary's 'Constructive Abstention'

EU

A EUR 5 bln expansion of the European Peace Facility has been approved with Hungary's "constructive abstention", Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said after a meeting of his European Union peers in Brussels on Monday, according to a report by state news wire MTI.

Hungary's EUR 50 million contribution to the facility will not be used for delivery of weapons to Ukraine, but for purposes that Hungary will decide, such as efforts to stem the flow of migration, strengthening stability in the Sahel region, and support for the Western Balkans, Szijjártó said.

He said United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who had joined the meeting at one point, had affirmed NATO's earlier position that the alliance would make every effort to avoid a direct confrontation with Russia.

He added that the negative consequences of the war in Ukraine had impacted countries neighboring Ukraine more directly than in those "hundreds or thousands" of kilometers away, giving them a "different perspective".

Szijjártó said he had agreed at the weekend with the Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Yermak to sign a contract soon on opening a new border crossing, between the Hungarian settlement of Nagyhódos and Velyka Palad, in Ukraine, to ease the flow of commercial traffic amid tensions along the Polish-Ukrainian border.

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