EU can avoid Hungary block on Russian asset plan for Ukraine, Borrell says | World News - Hindustan Times
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EU can avoid Hungary block on Russian asset plan for Ukraine, Borrell says

Reuters |
Jun 24, 2024 03:43 PM IST

UKRAINE-CRISIS/EU-BORRELL (UPDATE 2):UPDATE 2-EU can avoid Hungary block on Russian asset plan for Ukraine, Borrell says

June 24 - The European Union has found a way to use proceeds from frozen Russian assets to buy arms for Ukraine despite hold-ups from Hungary, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said on Monday.

EU can avoid Hungary block on Russian asset plan for Ukraine, Borrell says
EU can avoid Hungary block on Russian asset plan for Ukraine, Borrell says

EU governments agreed in May to use profits from the assets frozen inside the bloc to help Ukraine, with 90% of funds earmarked for military aid. But Hungary has been holding up approval of the necessary legal measures, diplomats say.

Hungary maintains warmer relations with Moscow than any other EU country. It does not give arms to Ukraine and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has criticised other EU and NATO members for doing so, saying they are fueling the war.

With a first tranche of proceeds worth 1.4 billion euros due next week, EU officials had been looking for a way to allow the funds to be used immediately to help Ukraine defend itself from Russia's invasion.

Borrell said EU officials had now found a way to approve the measures without needing the consent of any member country that abstained from the original decision.

"We have a legal procedure in order to avoid any kind of blockage," he said before a meeting of EU foreign affairs ministers in Luxembourg.

Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto did not speak to reporters on his way into the meeting. In a brief comment on Facebook, he said: "Billions more for Ukraine - this time by breaking European rules and leaving Hungary out."

But Borrell said that "since Hungary didn't participate in the decision, it is not necessary that they ... participate in the implementation".

"Now we have to implement this decision. The money will come next week. And I cannot have this money in my pocket - this money is for military support to Ukraine," he told reporters.

Borrell said he hoped the ministers would endorse the plan at their meeting.

The EU's plan for the immediate use of profits from frozen Russian assets is separate from a decision by G7 leaders this month to use future proceeds to fund $50 billion in loans to Ukraine.

This article was generated from an automated news agency feed without modifications to text.

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