Embassy of the United States of America
May 3, 2023
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Ambassador Pressman Travels to the Hungary-Ukraine Border
On May 3, as part of a two-day security-focused trip across Hungary, U.S. Ambassador David Pressman traveled to Hungary’s northeast border region with Ukraine.
The Ambassador met with refugees from Ukraine currently housed in a shelter in Máriapócs. Following private conversations with current occupants of the shelter, Ambassador Pressman told reporters: “Russia’s continued attacks are appalling but not surprising. Russia continues to intentionally target and kill civilians. The United States wants peace in Ukraine. The United States wants this war to end. The man who can end this war today is Vladimir Putin. The United States will continue to stand resolutely and unequivocally with the victims of Putin’s war.”
He then traveled to Mátészalka where he met with community members and local officials. He visited the historic local synagogue and a memorial to a celebrated Hungarian-American actor. Upon departing the town, Ambassador Pressman said: “It was insightful to hear the residents of Mátészalka’s perspectives on Hungary’s relationship with Ukraine as Russia’s war continues to destroy lives and livelihoods and create additional hardships for Hungarians.”
Ambassador Pressman then traveled to Beregsurány, where he was welcomed by Mayor István Herka and visited the Hungarian Charity Service of the Order of Malta to better understand their work with refugees arriving from Ukraine. He said: “It is inspiring to see the work of civil society organizations supporting their neighbors fleeing the devastation in Ukraine.”
Before departing the region, the Ambassador visited the Hungary-Ukraine border crossing station in Beregsurány, where he met with border officials to understand their experience with refugees. Ambassador Pressman noted: “It was important to hear the very real stories of human suffering and resilience shared with me by the Hungarians who serve their country and meet the innocent people fleeing Putin’s war in Ukraine every single day. As a frontline of NATO and the European Union, Hungary’s facilitation of safe, humane travel for refugees escaping the tragedies and injustices brought about by the Kremlin is essential to the security of our European Allies.”
Ambassador Pressman concluded the first day of his security-focused trip across Hungary by saying: “While others may try to distract from the very real threats to our shared security caused by Russia’s war, the United States will continue to support Ukraine’s ability to defend its people, its sovereignty, and its independence. Coming here is an important reminder that Russia’s brutal war continues just over the border and can only end when Vladimir Putin commits to a just and lasting peace for the people of Ukraine. The United States and our Allies’ enduring and unequivocal support remains key to securing that just and lasting peace.”
Ambassador Pressman’s cross country trip continues tomorrow with a visit to Veszprém to meet with U.S. servicemembers playing an important role securing NATO’s eastern flank.
For additional information and media inquiries, please contact the U.S. Embassy press office at PressBDP@state.gov. Ambassador Pressman may be followed on Twitter: @USAmbHungary.