Kuleba to Orbán: If he's so smart, maybe he can convince Putin to withdraw his troops from Ukraine

June 03. 2023. – 10:11 AM



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Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba hit back at Viktor Orbán at a press conference in Kyiv on Friday, after the Hungarian PM once again called on Ukraine to stop counter-attacking and negotiate with Russia instead, Pravda's European edition reports. Kuleba said that Ukraine wants peace to be restored more than anyone, and that as soon as possible, "but a just peace, a peace that first and foremost includes the restoration of territorial integrity".

"When somebody starts saying that we shouldn't counter-attack, but should negotiate – well, if he is so smart, maybe he can convince Putin to withdraw his troops from Ukraine and then there will be no counter-attack," Kuleba said. The Ukrainian foreign minister rejected suggestions "that constantly look at the problems from the perspective that Ukraine has to sacrifice something so that a solution can be reached".

"This is a perverse logic, a sick logic, which completely failed between 2014 and 2022. If they want to help, they should use their contacts and convince Putin to leave Ukraine," he said.

It was in his semi-regular Friday morning radio interview that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán brought up the fact that the Ukrainians were preparing a counter-attack, about which he said:

"It is the Ukrainians' business, and I myself don't aspire to military glory. But even a man with a year and a half of military experience like myself knows perfectly well – even without a military academy education, because one learnt it in the army – that if I attack, I will suffer three times as many casualties as those who are on the defensive. And for a country whose population is a fraction of that of the opposing side, launching a major military offensive in such circumstances is a bloodbath. We have to do everything we can, even before a counter-offensive is launched, to convince the parties that a ceasefire is needed and that peace talks are necessary," Orbán explained. A summary of the whole interview may be found here.

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