Greece and Hungary block the latest package of EU anti-Russian sanctions

Image of the EU and Ukrainian flags.

Image of the EU and Ukrainian flags. Credit: DexonDee/

Greece and Hungary both blocked the latest package of EU anti-Russian sanctions today, Saturday, May 27, according to Politico, citing five European diplomats.

This move by officials in Budapest and Athens followed the release by Brussels of a list of companies provided by Kyiv that it considered to be ‘sponsors of the war’ in Ukraine.

Among the list of 90 entities listed were five Greek companies and one from Hungary. It is believed that the two nations demanded that those companies be removed from the list before they would approve the package of sanctions.

“Greece reiterated that if there is concrete evidence of violations of the sanctions, they should be brought to the attention of the Member States concerned at the technical level so that it is properly investigated and then appropriate action is taken”, one of the news outlet’s sources said.

The position of Greece and Hungary caused tension at a recent meeting of EU foreign ministers, where German Foreign Minister Annalena Burbock lashed out at Budapest.

Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto also protested against the imposition of sanctions by the EU on eight Chinese companies from the list.

“This is very dangerous because it will cause a strong response from the Chinese,” the head of the Hungarian foreign ministry stressed.

EU chief diplomat Josep Borrell has already vowed to resolve the differences over the Ukrainian list of companies. It is not yet clear when the next negotiations on the sanctions package will take place though.

French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna said earlier that the package should be agreed upon by the next meeting of the Foreign Affairs Council, that is, no earlier than June 26.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said that the Ukrainian list included more than 90 companies, including Chinese ones. It also contained five Greek companies and one Hungarian.

“We are serious about fighting the circumvention of sanctions. Therefore, the 11th package includes measures against more than 90 companies around the world, which, according to strong evidence, violated the sanctions”, commented von der Leyen.

On May 15, Hungary blocked the allocation of a new tranche of military assistance to Ukraine in the amount of €500 million from the European Peace Fund.

The Hungarian authorities demanded that the fund play a ‘global’ role in the future, and not be used exclusively to equip the Ukrainian army.

To date, Brussels has already allocated €5.6 billion from the European Peace Fund to pay for arms supplies to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, as reported by

Hungarian Defense Minister Krysztof Salay-Bobrovnicki voiced his concern that EU countries had reduced their own strategic reserves to the limit due to supplies to Ukraine and are now putting themselves at risk. “The European defence industry has to grow somehow”, he insisted.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at