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Duda supports government meeting with Ukrainians on border

Thursday, 22 February 2024, 08:45
Duda supports government meeting with Ukrainians on border
Spilled Ukrainian grain at the border with Poland. Photo: the Polish Agency PAP

President of Poland Andrzej Duda supports the idea of a meeting between the Ukrainian and Polish governments with representatives of the European Commission to resolve the crisis at the border, says Andrzej Dera, the State Secretary of the Office of the Polish Head of State.

Source: European Pravda, citing TVN24, a Polish 24-hour commercial news channel

Quote from Dera: "The President advocates for this dialogue (negotiations with farmers and the Ukrainian side – ed.) to take place. This is the only way to solve this enormous problem. The issue is bilateral and very powerful... Our farmers are fighting for survival. The Ukrainian people are fighting for survival. The situation is dire from both perspectives because the determination on both sides is immense, and this problem simply needs to be resolved."

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Details: He added that there is no other way than "negotiations, dialogue, and decisions related to the European Union." 

"I would like to remind you that farmers across Europe are protesting today against what is happening with agriculture in the European Union," added Dera. 

He conveyed that Duda "supports" a meeting between the two governments, and added that "everything happening at the border now is a consequence of the war."

When asked if Andrzej Duda could be a "patron" of the meeting, Dera pointed out that it's not a question of patronage. 

"What is needed now is a meeting between our Polish government led by Donald Tusk with the Ukrainian government, and most importantly, with representatives of the EU," he said.

Read also: Bringing order to the border: why Ukraine and Poland need help from Frontex

Background:

  • On 21 February, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy proposed that Ukraine, Poland and the European Commission hold a joint meeting in response to Polish farmers blocking checkpoints on the Polish-Ukrainian border.
  • Since 20 February, Polish farmers have initiated a widespread protest across Poland, particularly at the border with Ukraine. Several incidents have occurred during this period, including the spilling of Ukrainian grain and the blockade of passenger traffic at the border.
  • Polish President Andrzej Duda, commenting on the blockade of the Ukraine border by Polish farmers, stated that the Polish government cannot restrict their right to a lawful protest.

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