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Reactions to the ’side effects’ of the Ukraine war

November 19th, 2022

A left-wing commentator excoriates the government for not doing enough to reduce Hungary’s dependency on Russia energy supplies, while the main pro-government daily devotes two editorials in as many days to its demand for an immediate ceasefire in Ukraine.

In Népszava, István Marnitz warns that Russian gas and oil supplies may be interrupted at any time, as long as the war in Ukraine continues. The flow of oil stopped this week because of a blackout caused by Russian air attacks. That problem was easily solved, but the vital components of the pipeline may also be hit one day. He accuses the government of being irresponsibly confident that Russian supplies will continue without serious problems.

In Magyar Nemzet, László Szőcs interprets the incident as a warning that the war may cause further problems well beyond Ukraine. As a much more serious example, he cites the case of the explosion apparently caused by a Ukrainian air defence missile that went astray and killed two people in Poland on Tuesday. He believes there is no reasonable alternative to an immediate armistice and ensuing peace talks. Both sides will certainly incur losses, he writes, but they will lose incomparably more by continuing to fight.

In the same daily, László Szentesi Zöldi urges the United States to promote an early ceasefire and peace negotiations. As he puts it, ‘Ukraine is not a decisive factor in this conflict’ but is paying the highest price for it. With each day that passes without a ceasefire, he writes, Ukraine’s chances of leading a normal life in the foreseeable future are diminishing, as a result of increasing losses in human lives, destroyed infrastructure and mass emigration.

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