PM Orban to Luxembourg's PM: Hungary does not support sanctioning of Church leaders
Hungarian PM Viktor Orban sent a letter to Luxembourg's PM Xavier Bettel to respond to his counterpart's criticism regarding Mr Orban's comments on the EU's planned, and eventually cancelled, sanctions against Russian Patriarch Kirill.
“I was surprised by your statement. You must know that Hungary always keeps all agreements,” PM Orban wrote, underlining that there are and can be debates, but Hungarians always play with open cards. PM Orban pointed out, that in reality, every prime minister in the European Council was aware that Patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, is not on the sanctions list, as the Hungarian delegation has been opposing this measure for a month at the sessions of the EU Ambassadors’ Forum. Hungary’s position was not opposed or objected to by any heads of state or government participating the European Council’s last meeting, Mr Orban wrote to his counterpart. He continued by stressing that
“We have achieved great results, and we preserved our unity. Please, don’t relativise, but celebrate this success. Regarding the essence of the issue, in order to avoid any future misunderstandings, Hungary’s constitution protects religious freedom, so Hungary will never support the sanctioning of church leaders and their isolation from believers. We want peace and there can be no peace without the participation of church leaders. I ask you, a leader who has always been a champion of human rights, to welcome Hungary’s position with understanding,”
PM Orban wrote in conclusion of his letter, his press chief told Hungary’s state news agency (MTI).