Viktor Orban, Hungary’s Leader, Meets With Xi in China After Talks With Putin

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban recently made headlines for his high-profile meetings with two of the world’s most powerful leaders: Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping. Orban’s visit to Moscow and Beijing has sparked speculation about the direction of Hungary’s foreign policy and its growing ties with authoritarian regimes.

Orban’s meeting with Putin in Moscow was seen as a sign of Hungary’s close relationship with Russia, despite its membership in the European Union and NATO. The two leaders discussed a range of issues, including energy cooperation and the situation in Ukraine. Orban has been a vocal supporter of Putin’s actions in Ukraine and has been criticized by the EU for his stance on the conflict.

Following his meeting with Putin, Orban traveled to Beijing to meet with Xi Jinping, where the two leaders discussed economic cooperation and signed several agreements aimed at boosting trade and investment between Hungary and China. Orban has been a strong supporter of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, a global infrastructure development project that aims to connect China to the rest of the world through a network of roads, railways, and ports.

Orban’s meetings with Putin and Xi have raised concerns among some Western leaders about Hungary’s growing alignment with authoritarian regimes. Orban has been accused of undermining democracy in Hungary through his attacks on the media, the judiciary, and civil society organizations. His government has also been criticized for its anti-immigrant policies and its crackdown on dissent.

Despite these criticisms, Orban remains popular in Hungary and has won several elections by emphasizing his government’s economic achievements and its efforts to protect Hungarian sovereignty. His meetings with Putin and Xi are seen as part of his strategy to diversify Hungary’s international alliances and reduce its dependence on the EU and the United States.

Orban’s critics argue that his cozying up to authoritarian leaders like Putin and Xi is a dangerous gamble that could harm Hungary’s reputation and undermine its democratic institutions. They fear that Orban’s government is moving closer to Russia and China at the expense of Hungary’s relations with its Western allies.

Orban, however, sees his meetings with Putin and Xi as an opportunity to strengthen Hungary’s economy and secure its place on the global stage. He believes that Hungary can benefit from closer ties with Russia and China, despite the concerns raised by the international community.

It remains to be seen how Orban’s meetings with Putin and Xi will impact Hungary’s foreign policy in the long run. As Hungary’s leader continues to navigate the complex geopolitics of the 21st century, the world will be watching closely to see how his alliances with Russia and China shape the future of Hungary and its place in the international community.