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EU leaders unanimously pass €50 billion 'Ukraine Facility' aid package

Photo by Markus Spiske / Unsplash

The leaders of the 27 European Union nations unanimously approved a €50 billion aid package for Ukraine, alleviating some of the doubt surrounding the Ukrainian government's ability to finance its budget and keep paying for its fight against Russia.

Passage of the so-called Ukraine Facility aid program, which provides aid for the next four years with the first €4.5 billion tranche coming next month, follows the sudden reversal of Hungarian leader Viktor Orban, who had threatened to veto the package.

"This means Ukrainians have financial guarantees for our social stability," Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelensky said in an address to the nation after the EU vote. "This is a clear signal to Moscow that Europe will withstand and that Europe will not be broken by any destructive waves that the Kremlin always comes up with."

Orban said he changed his mind and voted with the other 26 EU leaders, instead of using his power to veto the package, after he received guarantees that the money would be spent sensibly and would not diminish funding set aside for his nation. He had also faced an intense lobbying effort by all the other leaders.

"Mission accomplished," Orban wrote on X, formerly Twitter. "Hungary’s funds will not end up in Ukraine and we have a control mechanism at the end of the first and the second year. Our position on the war in Ukraine remains unchanged: we need a ceasefire and peace talks."

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