Far-right “Patriots of Europe”: new concern for the EU’s support for Ukraine

Orban, Babis and Kickl

The recent formation of a new far-right political group in the European Parliament by Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has raised concerns about the future of the EU’s support for Ukraine.

The group, named “Patriots for Europe,” includes several far-right parties from across the Union and is poised to become a significant force in EU politics.

Orbán’s new group not only challenges the EU’s stance on Ukraine but also seeks to push back against other EU policies, including those related to immigration and judicial independence. This could lead to increased tensions within the EU, affecting its overall stability and cohesion.

Composition of the new right-wing group in the European Parliament

Orbán announced the creation of Patriots for Europe on June 30, alongside the Austrian Freedom Party (FPÖ) and the centrist ANO party of former Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš. 

Since then, five more parties have joined, including Geert Wilders’ Party for Freedom (PVV) from the Netherlands, Portugal’s far-right Chega party, and Spain’s Vox. The Danish People’s Party and the Flemish nationalist Vlaams Belang have also committed to the group.

If Marine Le Pen’s French far-right National Rally (RN) party joins, as expected, the Patriots for Europe could become the third largest political group in the European Parliament, significantly shifting the balance of power. Le Pen’s RN alone would contribute 30 MEPs, bolstering the group’s influence.

Potential impact on European policies

The emergence of this new group poses a significant challenge to the EU’s support for Ukraine. 

Orbán and his allies have consistently campaigned against the EU’s stance on the Ukraine war, advocating for policies that would undermine sanctions against Russia and reduce military support for Ukraine. 

This stance directly conflicts with the current EU policy of strong support for Ukraine in its fight against Russian aggression. The group’s growth could lead to a more fragmented European Parliament, complicating efforts to maintain a unified front against Russia. 

With the Patriots for Europe potentially becoming the third largest group, their influence could obstruct or dilute EU resolutions and actions designed to support Ukraine.

Any weakening of this support could undermine Ukraine’s defense capabilities facing continuous Russian attacks and its prospects to reclaim occupied territories.

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