Foreign Minister slams Ukraine for declaring OTP Bank ‘international sponsor of war’

It is “scandalous” that Ukraine has placed OTP Bank on its list of “international sponsors of war”, Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said in Stockholm on Friday, adding that until that is withdrawn, it will be “very difficult” for the Hungarian government to negotiate about further sanctions.

It is “outrageous” that while Hungary is participating in the programme under which the European Union supports Ukraine with one and a half billion euros per month, the Ukrainian anti-corruption agency has placed the OTP Group on its list of “international sponsors of war” because the financial institution is still present in Russia, the foreign ministry cited Szijjarto as saying, in a statement.

“OTP is Hungary’s biggest bank. OTP has not violated any international laws. Its operations fully comply with all kinds of expectations and legislation. Placing it on the list of international sponsors of war is unacceptable and scandalous,” the minister said on the sidelines of an informal meeting of European Union foreign ministers.

“Therefore I made it clear today that as long as OTP stays on this list, it will be very difficult for us to even enter into negotiations on the eleventh sanctions package, it will be very difficult for us to negotiate economic restrictions that require additional sacrifices,” Szijjarto said.

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