Not too long before the start of the special military operation in Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin believed that Ukraine had a strong and well-equipped army, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said in an interview with German publication Bild.
"As for Ukraine, he said that the Ukrainian army was very strong and very well equipped by the West, its soldiers were very well trained. So if there is a conflict, then it will be a very, very complicated conflict. The impression he made on me was that, despite this fact, he believed that time was on Russia's side,” Viktor Orban said recalling his conversation with Putin during a visit to Moscow on February 1, 2022.
Putin spoke in favour of a peaceful settlement of both territorial claims and the conflict, Orban noted.
"Diplomacy [ultimately] failed, and now it is the army that is dictating [to Kyiv] what's happening. We must take politics and diplomacy back into our own hands — a ceasefire and negotiations. This is the only way we can save lives right now,” the Hungarian prime minister stated.
Viktor Orban said that Western sanctions not only failed to bring Russia to its knees, but they also failed to play a positive role in the peaceful settlement of the Ukrainian conflict, as the EU originally wanted.
The Hungarian leader refused to call Vladimir Putin a war criminal and said that, in his opinion, Ukraine was no longer a sovereign state.
Following the missile attack on the Black Sea Fleet headquarters in Crimea, Russia will obliterate airfields in Western Ukraine where Sukhoi Su-24 bombers are stationed