News from Hungary

Tristan Azbej: Hungary will veto sanctions against religious leader


In an interview with, State Secretary Tristan Azbej said that Hungary rejects the sanctions against Eastern Church leaders.

The European Commission intends to put Kirill, the Russian patriarch, on the list of EU-sanctioned persons. Many religious leaders asked Hungarian Prime-minister Viktor Orbán to veto these sanctions. Tristan Azbej, Hungarian State Secretary for the Aid of Persecuted Christians and the Hungary Helps Program, clearly stated that Hungary would not accept such sanctions.

According to him, the war between Russia and Ukraine brought out many conflicts. However, “Hungary does not take sides but stands for peace and peacemaking” amid the conflicts.

He also said that “we cannot agree with the sanctions which, instead of calming, escalate tension. We also have to recognise that certain sanctions have more negative effects on the European Union than on the target country.”

He finds the idea of the European Commission that sanctions should be imposed on Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church both useless and harmful.

Many Eastern leaders turned to the Hungarian Government to intercede in the European Union and veto the sanctions against the religious leader. Azbej said that Hungary would make every effort to solve this delicate situation. According to him, “the churches deserve that we make every effort [to help]”.

Besides supporting the sister churches, he thinks that Hungary has a moral duty to convince the EU that these sanctions would not promote peace.


Leave a reply