The package of sanctions, the sixth imposed by the EU since the start of the war in February, had been delayed by vigorous opposition from Orban — widely seen as the Kremlin’s closest EU ally — who threatened to derail the block’s efforts to punish Moscow for its war if they affected energy imports to Hungary.
Hungary’s divisive leader has once again got his own way with the European Union — this time in tough negotiations on Russian oil at a summit in Brussels, AP reports.
And nationalist Prime Minister Viktor Orban wasn’t shy about trumpeting his success in leveraging the bloc to win significant concessions, allowing his country to continue purchasing Russian crude even as war rages on in neighboring Ukraine.
The European Commission’s “proposal to ban the use of Russian oil in Hungary was defeated,” Orban said in a video statement on Facebook. “Families can sleep well tonight as the most outrageous idea has been averted.”
EU leaders concluded four weeks of negotiations on Monday to impose a partial embargo on Russian oil imports.
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