EU Desperate as Orbán Nears Powerful Position in Europe

Written by Henrik Rothen

Jan.08 - 2024 4:25 PM CET

Photo: Shutterstock.com
Photo: Shutterstock.com
EU Desperate as Orbán Nears Powerful Position in Europe.

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Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán is on the verge of assuming one of the most influential positions in the EU.

Starting July 1, Hungary will take over the rotating EU presidency.

Concurrently, Charles Michel, President of the European Council, announced his candidacy for the EU Parliament election. If elected, he plans to resign, potentially allowing Orbán to assume a role fostering cohesion and consensus in the EU, as per EU rules in the absence of a permanent council president. This is reported by Politico.

This scenario, with Orbán controlling the council for six months post the 2024 EU election, is something most EU leaders desperately wish to avoid due to escalating tensions, including disagreements over Ukraine and Hungary's rule-of-law violations.

For the first time, a sitting council president is running for an EU Parliament election.

Criticized for timing, Charles Michel's decision to leave the council presidency prematurely for a political career in the Parliament is seen as self-centered and irresponsible, potentially paving the way for Orbán.

To prevent this, Michel suggests that EU countries must quickly agree on a successor.

The European Council can appoint a successor by the end of June, he told Belgian media.

This puts pressure on EU heads of government to agree on Michel's replacement before July 1 to avoid Orbán likely taking over.

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