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Poland doesn’t want new Iron Curtain - Foreign Minister

Wyślij Print Pobierz added: | 2014-11-09 10:48:59
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Poland's new Foreign Minister Grzegorz Schetyna highlighted the situation in Ukraine and relations with Russia in a policy speech on Polish foreign policy in 2014-2015 presented in the lower house of Parliament on Thursday.

Poland's new Foreign Minister Grzegorz Schetyna highlighted the situation in Ukraine and relations with Russia in a policy speech on Polish foreign policy in 2014-2015 presented in the lower house of Parliament on Thursday. He said that the year 2014 will go down in history as a time when Russia put a question mark over the European international order.
"History will remember it [2014]mostly as a time when, on the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War I, the post-Cold War world order in Europe was questioned by Russia”. Schetyna said that the situation in Eastern Europe is the cause of the greatest concern and anxiety for Poland as the only EU country to share its border with both Ukraine and Russia – the main actors of the current crisis.
“We do not want to see a repeat of the Cold War; we do not want a new Iron Curtain – even if moved to the Bug or Dnieper rivers”, Schetyna said. He said that the conflict in Ukraine led to deterioration of relations between Russia and Poland but added that they can become good again. "The conflict in Ukraine has made our relations with the Russian Federation worse – contrary to our will – both in the economic and political spheres. We do not want our policy towards Russia to boil down to sanctions”, Schetyna said. "A critical assessment of Russia's policy does not alter the fact that we will remain neighbors and economic partners. We believe that Polish-Russian relations can be good,” he added.
Poland’s foreign minister underlined that despite the adverse changes in Poland’s neighborhood, the country is secure because of its NATO membership and security and defense cooperation with the United States. "The developments of the last few months prove that Poland did not make a mistake by putting its stakes on the two pillars of Poland's foreign policy: membership of the European Union and of NATO,” Schetyna said. "It is important for us to deepen our security and defense cooperation with the United States. The programs realized so far – the rotating presence of US armed forces and other allies’ units, preparations for deploying elements of the missile defense system in Poland in 2018 – should be seen as successful,” he added. Schetyna also said that the although Poland's participation in ISAF operations in Afghanistan will draw to a close this year the government is considering participating in a new, smaller NATO training mission in this country.
Schetyna also referred to Poland's plans to 2020 on how to support the economy when the funds from the new budget perspective expire - "We cannot afford to see Poland's development stall once European funds have ceased to flow to our country. Preparations for a post-2020 EU perspective must begin now. We want a stronger Polish presence in the world, especially outside Europe.