Hungary’s ruling party expected to boycott Monday’s NATO meeting

The new cold war

Published 30 July 2023
- By Editorial Staff
The Hungarian parliament.

The ruling Fidesz party in Hungary is expected to boycott Monday’s scheduled session on Sweden’s NATO membership, which will likely postpone the vote and delay the final decision.

According to the parliamentary agenda, a vote on Sweden’s NATO membership is scheduled for Monday in the Hungarian parliament. The session, called by speaker László Kövér at the request of the opposition, is scheduled to begin at 13:00.

However, the ruling Fidesz party is expected to boycott the meeting, Hungarian independent newspaper HVG reports. Without Fidesz’s participation, even the agenda of the meeting cannot be approved. The newspaper therefore estimates that it is “almost certain” that there will be no vote on Sweden’s NATO accession on Monday.

Fidesz politician Zsolt Németh, chairman of the parliament’s foreign affairs committee, has stated that the decision is “not urgent”. He says that since Turkey is not expected to vote on the matter until the fall, Hungary can still keep its promise not to be the last country to ratify Sweden’s application. According to HVG, Hungarian politicians will meet again after the summer on September 25.

During the NATO summit in Vilnius in early July, Hungary said it would vote in favor of Sweden’s membership, but Prime Minister Viktor Orbán also said that “instead of bringing weapons to Ukraine, we should bring peace.”