Ukraine war looms over Pope’s trip to Hungary
April 28, 2023 - April 30, 2023 - Pope Francis’ visit to Hungary is likely to be dominated by the war in Ukraine and his meeting with nationalist Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, whose views often clash with the pontiff's own.
Viktor Orbá’s stance on migration, Russia's invasion of Ukraine and LGBTQ+ rights, contrasts with
the Pope's attitude of acceptance, and support for Kyiv.
Five months before Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the pope made a seven-hour stopover in Budapest for an international religious event, during which he promised to return to the predominantly secular country where 39 percent of the population is Catholic.
His trip is bringing Francis the closest he has traveled to the conflict in Ukraine.
Unlike other EU leaders, Mr Orban has refused to back military aid for Kyiv and maintained relations with Russia's Vladimir Putin.
Francis is the second pope to visit Hungary, after John Paul II made trips in 1991 and 1996.