US Envoy is Out of Line, Says Hungarian FM - Here's Ambassador Pressman's Reply

  • 3 Feb 2023 9:19 AM
  • Hungary Matters
US Envoy is Out of Line, Says Hungarian FM - Here's Ambassador Pressman's Reply
Péter Szijjártó has said that the US ambassador in Hungary - or any other ambassador for that matter -- had no business interfering in Hungary's domestic affairs.

In response to a question concerning recent remarks by US Ambassador David Pressman, the foreign minister told a press conference: “Hungary is a sovereign country and nobody can tell us from the outside how we should live.”

Commenting on Pressman’s comments to Politico that “Political leaders in the government of Hungary often speak of promoting peace, but — from condemning sanctions to embracing Russian ‘cease-fire’ proposals — they continue to push policies endorsed by Putin,” Szijjártó said it was “of no interest” what Pressman or any ambassador thought about domestic political trends in Hungary.

“If he wants to use his stay in Hungary to pass judgment on the activities of a government which has been elected by a significant majority of Hungarians … then he will have a very difficult job in terms of working successfully to improve cooperation between the two countries,” he said, highlighting the importance of mutual respect.

Szijjártó: ‘We Don’t Accept Governors or Procurators’

“We do not accept governors or procurators … sent here to say how we should lead our lives,” Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó said in reaction to comments by US Ambassador David Pressman’s to Politico.

“That era is over.” Szijjártó told a news conference held on a different subject that it was up to Hungarian voters to decide whether the government was doing a good job or not, and they would pass judgment in the next general election, as they had done unambiguously in past years, he said.

Szijjártó said the government’s foreign policy was guided purely by national interests and the wish for peace to return to Ukraine as soon as possible.

“Attempts have been made from abroad, unsuccessfully, to install a government in Hungary that does not represent the national interest,” the minister said.

“I might add that the significant amount of money that has been mobilised for this purpose has not turned out to be a good investment,” he added.

Ambassador David Pressman responded to his critism on Twitter:

"Respectfully, we do not consider Russia’s attempt to unilaterally redraw the borders of Europe as just a “domestic political development in Hungary.”"

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