Trump to Meet Next Week With Orban, Hungary’s Leader

Former President Donald J. Trump will meet privately with Viktor Orban, the prime minister of Hungary, at Mr. Trump’s club in Florida next week, according to a person briefed on the plans.

Mr. Orban is a right-wing nationalist who has waged an aggressive campaign against immigration and has declared that the West “is at war with itself.” He is a longtime ally of Mr. Trump and has close ties to the populist conservative movement in the United States.

Mr. Trump has frequently praised Mr. Orban at rallies and in speeches since leaving the White House. Their meeting, which is scheduled to take place at Mr. Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach next Friday, underscores the degree to which Mr. Trump has tried to establish himself as a sort of president-in-exile.

It comes as Mr. Trump is closing in on the Republican presidential nomination and is preparing for the general election campaign against President Biden, who has had a chilly relationship with the Hungarian prime minister.

The White House’s National Security Council said it was unaware of any plans for Mr. Orban to visit Mr. Biden on his trip.

A spokesman for Mr. Trump did not respond to an email seeking comment.

Mr. Orban has been at odds with the leaders of other NATO and European Union nations over the war in Ukraine and has been assailed by critics as steering Hungary toward authoritarianism. Like Mr. Trump, he has sometimes appeared sympathetic to or admiring of President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia.

Hungary has hosted meetings of CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Conference, which has become an extension of Mr. Trump’s MAGA movement, and Mr. Orban appeared at the group’s meeting in Texas two years ago.

Mr. Orban sought the upcoming meeting, according to the person briefed on the plans. The two men first developed a relationship when Mr. Trump was president, and Mr. Trump endorsed Mr. Orban for a fourth term in 2022.

In a speech earlier this month, Mr. Orban effectively endorsed Mr. Trump, casting the election in the United States as part of a global referendum on what kind of government democracies should choose.

“The year of 2024 could be a watershed: a ‘super election’ year, when people in Brussels, America, India and a dozen other places will decide what leadership they want in the current of global economic transformation and its crashing ice floes,” he said.

He added, “We cannot interfere in other countries’ elections, but we would very much like to see President Donald Trump return to the White House and make peace here in the eastern half of Europe. It is time for another ‘Make America Great Again’ presidency in the United States.”

Their last meeting was in 2022 at Mr. Trump’s golf club in Bedminster, N.J., after which Mr. Trump posted on his social media website, “Great spending time with my friend, Viktor Orbán, the Prime Minister of Hungary. We discussed many interesting topics — few people know as much about what is going on in the world today. We were also celebrating his great electoral victory in April.”

That meeting came on the heels of a speech Mr. Orban gave in which he derided nations with “mixed race,” an address that was widely condemned as echoing Nazi rhetoric.

“We are not a mixed race,” Mr. Orban said in the speech, adding, “and we do not want to become a mixed race.”

Mr. Trump, who has been broadly criticized for undermining democracy and is under federal indictment on allegations he illegally tried to subvert the peaceful transfer of power to Mr. Biden, has espoused a similar anti-immigrant message. He began saying in speeches in recent months that undocumented immigrants are “poisoning the blood” of the country, doubling down on the line when he was criticized for language with echoes of white supremacy and Hitler.

Mr. Trump often describes Mr. Orban — who has been criticized for democratic backsliding in Hungary under his rule and who has made statements against Ukraine since the Russian invasion — as a “great leader.”

“There is a great man, a great leader in Europe — Viktor Orban,” Mr. Trump said in a speech last month. “He is the prime minister of Hungary. He is a very great leader, a very strong man. Some people don’t like him because he’s too strong.”

Peter Baker contributed reporting.