Hungary lashes out at Ukraine over Russian gas

Hungary signed a fifteen-year gas purchase contract with Russia’s Gazprom bypassing Ukraine on Monday. [Sergei Ilnitsky/EPA-EFE]

Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó summoned the Ukrainian ambassador in Budapest on Tuesday over Kyiv’s decision to turn to the European Commission over the Hungarian-Russian gas deal, Telex reported.

Hungary signed a fifteen-year gas purchase contract with Russia’s Gazprom bypassing Ukraine on Monday. This angered Kyiv, who said it would turn to the EU Commission for a solution.

“We consider it a violation of our sovereignty that Ukraine wants to prevent Hungary’s secure gas supply, we will take this to heart, and we have asked the Ukrainian Ambassador to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade to come to the Ministry on Tuesday”, Szijjártó said on Facebook. In response, the Ukrainian foreign ministry said it would also summon the Hungarian ambassador.

Szijjártó also said that he is deeply outraged by the Ukrainian government’s decision to challenge this treaty at the European Commission. “The Ukrainians have nothing to do with what we agree [and] with whom,” he wrote.

The gas deal with Russia covers the purchase of 4.5 billion cubic metres of gas per year. Gazprom will deliver this volume to Hungary via two routes: 3.5 bcm from the south via the Serbian-Hungarian interconnector, operational from 1 October, and 1 bcm from Austria.

(Vlagyiszlav Makszimov | EURACTIV.com with Telex)

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