100s of titles, one news app for just $10 a month.
Dive Deeper:
Get all your news in one place
Latest National news:
Australia election 2022 live: Anthony Albanese promises to ‘bring Australians together’; Liberals mull inner-city rout after ‘teal revolution’
Follow all the day’s developments
Read news from The Economist, FT, Bloomberg and more, with one subscription
Learn More
Why I love this paw-fectly delightful flower
Kangaroo paws are not scented, nor particularly useful except in the most elegant of floral arrangements, the kind I can't…
Homes of the Hunter: As comfortable as country can get
Jim Kellar visits a property so stunning in its attention to detail that it's inspirational.
Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison have emptied the Liberals’ broad church
The party has been routed in its metropolitan heartland – the moderate wing has been decimated
Western Australia: The state that made Anthony Albanese Australia’s next prime minister
Western Australia turned the tide in tight election to return Labor to power and make Anthony Albanese Australia's next prime…
From analysis to good news, read the world’s best news in one place
Lake Mac Arts website a 'one-stop-shop' for cultural events
"The diversity of what we have now is excellent, from opera to DJ sets to contemporary dance. A few years…
Scott Morrison’s faithful downcast as second election miracle falls short
Soft aimless jazz replaces news coverage at the Liberal reception in Sydney with bewildered supporters trying to piece together what…

One man stands between Europe and a ban on Russian oil: Hungary's Viktor Orban

By Christopher Dean Hopkins
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban gives his an international press conference April 6, days after his FIDESZ party won the parliamentary election, in the Karmelita monastery housing the prime minister's office in Budapest. (Attila Kisbenedek / AFP via Getty Images)

The European Union would like to ban imports of Russian oil in retaliation for the invasion of Ukraine, but there's one major obstacle to that effort: Hungary and its prime minister, Viktor Orban.

The move would have to be adopted unanimously to take effect, and so far, Orban has refused to get on board. Negotiations are ongoing.

There are economic reasons for Hungary's refusal, said András Simonyi, a former Hungarian ambassador to the United States who is now with the Atlantic Council.

"The Hungarian oil industry, the Hungarian so-called national oil company, MOL, is dependent on Russia imports for its production," he tells Morning Edition.

But there are also clearly political aspects to the situation, Simonyi adds, starting with the affinity for Putin and Russia's oligarchic regime held by the populist Orban. And Simonyi says there are other factors that might make Orban's government less cooperative with the rest of Europe.

"He has had his own problems unrelated to the Ukraine crisis with the European Commission, related to the rule of law and the state of democracy in Hungary," Simonyi says.

Like Putin, Orban has leveraged his political strength — his party holds a two-thirds majority in the Hungarian legislature — to suppress his country's press and the arts as well as crack down on its LGBTQ population.

Listen to the full interview.

This story first appeared on the Morning Edition live blog.

What is inkl?
The world’s most important news, from 100+ trusted global sources, in one place.
Morning Edition
Your daily
news overview

Morning Edition ensures you start your day well informed.

No paywalls, no clickbait, no ads
Enjoy beautiful reading

Content is only half the story. The world's best news experience is free from distraction: ad-free, clickbait-free, and beautifully designed.

Expert Curation
The news you need to know

Stories are ranked by proprietary algorithms based on importance and curated by real news journalists to ensure that you receive the most important stories as they break.