Diplomatic tensions between Hungary and Ukraine, already suffering from strained relations, are coming to a head after a U.S. intelligence leak indicated that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky wanted to blow up an oil pipeline supplying Hungary’s energy needs, with the Hungarian foreign minister calling the plan a “threat against Hungary’s sovereignty.”
“In the last few days, news has emerged that the president of Ukraine has threatened to detonate the Druzhba oil pipeline to Hungary. We are all aware that Hungary is currently supplied with oil through this very pipeline. If no more oil were to come to Hungary through this pipeline, then Hungary’s oil supply would simply not be physically possible,” Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said in a video posted Wednesday.
As Remix News previously reported, a leak obtained by The Washington Post revealed that Ukraine was planning to blow up the Druzhba oil pipeline that transports crude from Russia to Hungary, as well as other European countries. The leaked documents indicate that Zelensky proposed at a February meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Yulia Svyrydenko that Ukraine should carry out the action to cripple Hungarian energy infrastructure reliant on Russian oil.
The Druzhba oil pipeline is of strategic importance for the Hungarian economy, and its loss would cause serious problems for the country, according to the Hungarian government source who spoke to Index.
The Hungarian foreign minister further stated: “Not to mention the fact that other countries are also fundamentally dependent on the Druzhba pipeline for their oil supplies. Therefore, such a threat is obviously against Hungary’s sovereignty because the security of energy supply is a matter of sovereignty. Therefore, if someone calls for Hungary’s energy supply to be made impossible, they are in effect attacking Hungary’s sovereignty.”
Meanwhile, Hungarian MEP Tamás Deutsch called on European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to clarify whether cutting off Hungary’s oil supply was her suggestion.
Deutsch said that part of the news was that the president of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, allegedly sent a message to a Ukrainian oil company that she would consider it very appropriate if the Ukrainians stopped foreign supplies of oil as part of a pressure campaign exerted on Hungary.
The leader of the Fidesz group in the European Parliament stressed that in order to make sure that everyone can see the situation clearly, they expect von der Leyen to clarify immediately her role in instructing the Ukrainians to stop oil supplies to exert pressure on Hungary.