Aleksey Yakubin: Ukraine Deliberately Chose the Scenario of Damaging Relations with Hungary

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


Ukraine has consciously chosen the scenario of aggravating of bilateral relations with Hungary. Such an opinion was expressed to “Glavnovosti” by the political scientist Aleksey Yakubin, commenting on the decision of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (MFA) to declare the consul of Hungary in Beregovo persona non grata.

“The authorities understand that relations with Hungary have already worsened since last year after the adoption of the law on education and the 7th language article. They aren’t interested in factually improving them or solving this conflictual point. What matters to them is continuing to strengthen the conflict with Hungary, understanding that we are anyway entering a new electoral cycle and this topic can play on the radical voter. It is to show that Kiev doesn’t surrender and is ready to further continue this conflict with the government in Budapest,” explained Yakubin.

He also noted that the MFA didn’t use standard diplomatic steps – for example, internal correspondence through diplomatic channels, and didn’t discuss this situation.

“Instead our MFA decided to scandalise and politise this situation, Klimkin started to issue meaningless public warnings. In fact, he has started to act as a politician, but and the Minister of Foreign Affairs. It seems to me that this is being done consciously,” said the political scientist.

“In fact, it is the creation of an image in Ukraine of the country being a besieged fortress. Our relations with the Russian Federation are at an almost zero political level. And now the scandal with Hungary will be additionally strengthened, instead of solving it in a civilised, diplomatic way,” added Yakubin.

The political scientist noted that Hungary, obviously, will expel the Ukrainian consul.

“Budapest already showed during the linguistic issue that it blocked various NATO initiatives connected to Ukraine. Obviously, they will do this here too. Now they will be this in the context of the EU. On the one hand, it can be profitable for the government in Kiev: the creation of the image of a besieged fortress on the eve of elections,” said the expert.

He also added that now attempts will be made to pin the European integration failures on Hungary as Putin’s fifth column. At the same time it is obvious that Ukraine will heat things up instead of resolving this issue.

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