Orban makes surprise visit to China
Orban makes surprise visit to China

The Hungarian PM has landed in Beijing following his visits to Kiev and Moscow last week

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has arrived in China as part of his “peace mission” tour, which included meetings with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kiev.

The Hungarian leader confirmed he is already in China with a photo of China’s Deputy Foreign Minister Hua Chunying greeting him at the airport and a brief post on X (formerly Twitter) on Monday morning, saying: “Peace mission 3.0 Beijing.”

The news of a possible visit to Beijing was first reported by the Hungarian news portal 444, which wrote on Sunday that Orban was “scheduled to arrive in the Asian country at dawn on Monday.”

Last week, Orban traveled to Kiev, where he met with Zelensky in an effort to persuade him to consider ceasefire talks with Moscow. The Hungarian PM then embarked on a surprise visit to Moscow, which, according to his office, was part of Orban’s “peacekeeping mission.”

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Orban and Putin engaged in several hours of discussion aimed at finding the “shortest way out” of the conflict in Ukraine. The Hungarian leader, however, admitted that Moscow and Kiev remain “very far apart,” noting that Zelensky “didn’t like” his proposals much.

Orban’s surprise trip to Russia sparked fury in Kiev and among fellow EU leaders, but the Hungarian PM stated that one of the most important steps to ending the conflict is “establishing contact” and argued that he doesn’t require an EU mandate to promote peace. Hungary, which currently holds the rotating EU presidency, is one of the few bloc members, alongside neighboring Slovakia, that maintains neutrality and refuses to send weapons to Ukraine.

The visit to Beijing comes as Hungary canceled “at short notice” a meeting between Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto and his German counterpart, Annalena Baerbock.

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