RussiaSeptember 27 2022, 13:06 pm

Hungarian Leaders Welcome Italian Election Results- a Nucleus for an EU Coalition Against Russian Sanctions?

The Polit­i­cal Direc­tor for Hun­gar­i­an Prime Min­is­ter Vik­tor Orbán has tweet­ed his con­grat­u­la­tions to the far-right polit­i­cal coali­tion elect­ed to lead the Ital­ian gov­ern­ment. The tweet from Balázs Orbán (no rela­tion) sug­gests a pos­si­ble future attempt to build a Euro­pean coali­tion seek­ing to end sanc­tions on Rus­sia for its inva­sion of Ukraine:

Sep­tem­ber 26, 2022 PM Orbán has sent let­ters to @GiorgiaMeloni, @matteosalvinimi, @berlusconi con­grat­u­lat­ing them on the elec­tion results. “I look for­ward to our future coop­er­a­tion to pre­serve peace in our coun­tries & in Europe, to restart the Euro­pean econ­o­my and to ease the ener­gy crisis.

Orban him­self also took the oppor­tu­ni­ty to crit­i­cize the EU sanctions:

Far-right Hun­gar­i­an prime min­is­ter, Vik­tor Orbán, used the results of the Ital­ian elec­tion to crit­i­cise the EU sanc­tions against Rus­sia, say­ing they had dri­ven up ener­gy prices. He said the sanc­tions had “back­fired”, adding that angry vot­ers were oust­ing gov­ern­ments in Europe as a result.

For its part, Rus­sia wel­comed the Ital­ian elec­tion result, the Tass news agency spokesman com­ment­ing, “We are ready to wel­come any polit­i­cal force able to show itself more con­struc­tive in rela­tions with Russia.”

In Feb­ru­ary, the Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) pub­lished a report on the new and devel­op­ing alliance between US con­ser­v­a­tives and Euro­pean nation­al­ists,  a poten­tial means for Rus­sia to exert covert influ­ence in Europe and the US, using Hun­gary as a plat­form. As that report noted:

This report has exam­ined Hungary’s cen­tral role in the Nation­al Con­ser­vatism alliance, and the coun­try is a par­tic­u­lar­ly fer­tile oppor­tu­ni­ty for Rus­sia exploita­tion of that alliance. For exam­ple, it is no secret that the ORBÁN gov­ern­ment and Hun­gar­i­an elites enjoy a unique­ly close rela­tion­ship with Rus­sia with­in the EU. The Ger­man Coun­cil on For­eign Rela­tions reports that the Russ­ian influ­ence in Hun­gary is medi­at­ed main­ly by “dirty busi­ness” interests.

Red the full report here.

The GIOR also report­ed last week on a Dutch far-right pop­ulist polit­i­cal par­ty that post­ed “A peti­tion for afford­able ener­gy in the EU.” seek­ing an end to EU sanc­tions on Rus­sia for its inva­sion of Ukraine. As we report­ed, the peti­tion was post­ed by the Forum for Democ­ra­cy Inter­na­tion­al, head­ed by John Laugh­land, a British nation­al and con­spir­a­cy the­o­rist with close ties to Rus­sia. Forum for Democ­ra­cy Inter­na­tion­al just tweet­ed their own con­grat­u­la­tions to the new Ital­ian coalition:

#FVD and its leader @thierrybaudet are delight­ed to con­grat­u­late Fratel­li d’I­talia and the par­ty leader @GiorgiaMeloni on their mag­nif­i­cent elec­tion victory.


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