"There are many options to avoid Orban": Michel clarifies the situation with the succession in the European Council
There may be a political will in the European Council to avoid the presidency of Viktor Orban, the Hungarian leader who has been criticized for his pro-Russian stance. If so, European leaders have enough time to choose another successor to the current president of the European Council, Charles Michel.
Charles Michel himself said this in a comment to journalists on January 7, Reuters reports. To recap: On January 6, Michel, a former Belgian Prime Minister, announced his decision to run for the EU parliamentary elections in June 2024. This means that he will leave the presidency of the European Council before his term expires at the end of November.
Since Hungary holds the EU Council presidency from July to December, Prime Minister Orban could chair the European Council meeting.
"I want to make it clear: in any case, a decision on my successor should be made in June, and the decision on [my transfer to the European] Parliament will be made in July. Therefore, it is easy for the Council to make a decision, to appoint my successor to the post," Michel assured.
He added that "there are many tools if there is a political will to avoid Orban" at the head of the European Council.
As OBOZ.UA previously reported:
- A meeting between Volodymyr Zelensky and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban may take place in the near future. The teams of both leaders are working on organizing it, the office of the President of Ukraine said.
- It became known in December 2023 that Orban had agreed to meet with Zelensky "sometime in the future."