Hungary’s new President Katalin Novak at her inauguration ceremony on Saturday condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and supported Ukraine’s accession to the EU.
That’s according to Reuters, Ukrinform reports.
“We condemn Putin’s aggression, the armed invasion of a sovereign state. We say eternally no to every effort aiming at the restoration of the Soviet Union,” Novak said, noting that the war in Ukraine was also “fought against us peace-loving Hungarians” and adding that Hungary demanded that war crimes be investigated and punished.
According to Daily News Hungary, Novak supported Ukraine’s accession to the EU.
“Hungary will not give up its sovereignty and supports Ukraine joining the community of European countries,” she said.
Hungary is prepared to make sacrifices for peace and does not block its allies from making sacrifices either, but it will not agree to decisions that demand sacrifices from Hungarians that are greater than the amount of pain they would inflict on Russia, Novak said.
During her speech, Novak said that her first trip would take her to Poland, in an apparent gesture to mend relations with Warsaw.
Hungary’s rejection of sending weapons shipments to neighboring Ukraine and its opposition to a planned European Union embargo on Russian oil imports has weighed on relations between Budapest and Warsaw, whose two nationalist governments have been long-time allies in the EU.
Novak, a former Fidesz party lawmaker and ally of Prime Minister Viktor Orban, was elected to the largely ceremonial post of president in March, shortly before Orban won another landslide victory in elections on April 3.
Hungary’s first woman president, Novak has served as deputy chair of Fidesz and was family affairs minister in Orban’s previous government.