Military Aid for Ukraine?

Still Need Help

Still Need Help

According to recent surveys, the majority of Poles are against providing military help to Ukraine. When the authorities of Ukraine asked for help with military training of their soldiers, British Prime Minister David Cameron declared that the UK would send 75 qualified British soldiers who were supposed to develop the skills of Ukraine’s soldiers. The Polish authorities issued a similar declaration. Poland takes part in Defence Education Enhancement Programme (DEEP). The purpose of the initiative is to help Ukraine achieve and increase certain military standards that are applied in NATO. Training courses will take place on Polish territory.
polska.newsweek.pl

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Poles Interested in Ukraine

Still of Interest

Still of Interest

The CBOS public opinion research centre has found that the majority of Polish people are interested in the Ukrainian crisis. According to a CBOS survey conducted in October, 83% of Polish people are still captivated by events unfolding in Ukraine. 58% share the opinion that new Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz is continuing the previous government’s policy in relation to Ukraine. 57% of respondents fear that Russia is not going to restrain its territorial claims on Ukraine and that Moscow is also going to evoke other conflicts in countries where there Russian minorities are present. This anxiety is growing. CBOS has noted an increase of 9% in this regard since May. 67% of respondents consider the situation in Ukraine as risky for the security of Poland. This is a 11% drop against the exceptionally high figures in August and September (78%). 83% of respondents were worried about the impact of the Ukrainian crisis on the Polish economy; 74% of respondents said that the crisis could effect Polish energy security; 42% of respondents fear a foreign army might invade Polish territory. Only 4% believed Ukraine would regain its lost territory.
rp.pl

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More U.S. Forces in Poland

Defending Europe

Defending Europe

According to tokfm.pl, the United States Ambassador to Poland Stephen Mull posted a comment on his Twitter account to the effect that the deployment of U.S. air force missions in Poland will continue. What is more, according to Stars and Stripes, which is associated with the American military, two groups of fighters with Americans on board will be headed to Poland this year. America is sending its troops to missions in Europe to highlight the fact that they honour their obligations to their European allies. According to a spokeswoman for the U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Africa, the next mission will depend on the level of funding foreseen for 2015.
wprost.pl

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Polish Apples in America

Polish Apple Pie

Polish Apple Pie

The Polish authorities are asking the USA for permission to export Polish apples to America, according to Ambassador Ryszard Schnepf who has been quoted as saying, “Open the door for Freedom Apples”. For years Americans have not allowed EU apples on their market (except for Italy). Officially, the US authorities give health reasons in an effort to protect their own market. Now Poland is attempting to get approval for export due to the Russian embargo on the import of agricultural products from the EU and the USA, including apples. The Polish Ambassador in Washington Ryszard Schnepf has already discussed the recently implemented sanctions by the Russian Federation with Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services Michael Scuse. According to Schnepf, Americans are not precluding the use of fast track approval, but further meetings with the heads of agencies working with agricultural products to the United States are necessary. On 18 August there will be a meeting during which Poland will provide the Americans with a list of fruit and vegetables most affected by the Russian sanctions. So far Poland has exported broccoli and peppers to the USA. The Polish Embassy in Washington has posted a video of Schnepf touting “delicious Polish apples” on Facebook and Twitter. “Dear American friends, please join me in asking the US Government to open the door for our Freedom Apples,” the Polish Ambassador encourages.
wyborcza.pl

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LOT Passengers Afraid of Ukraine

No Ukraine Fly

No Ukraine Fly

The last days saw the unspeakable horror of the Malaysian aircraft disaster in which 295 people lost their lives. The plane was shot down during a flight from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur. While the culprit of the disaster still remains unknown, Polish citizens who often visit Ukraine are becoming increasingly scared of crossing the Polish-Ukrainian border. Many customers of LOT Polish Airlines have already bought tickets to Ukraine, but are now wondering whether they should stay in Poland. In order to calm their fears, a LOT spokesperson claims that there are no flights near the danger zone in Ukraine. Those passengers, however, who are travelling to Odessa, Lviv or Kiev within the next few days can change the date of their flight without any additional fees. This procedure is applicable only for tickets for flights scheduled between 17 July and 15 August. Passengers who have such tickets can choose another date within a 12-month period. This will enable LOT customers to avoid unnecessary stress during their journey. Nevertheless, to pacify those who have to fly to Poland’s eastern neighbour and are still afraid, LOT stresses that the area that is now rife with separatists is not included on its flight paths. Even flights to Far Eastern countries do not fly over the danger zone in Eastern Ukraine. Those who are flying to Moscow or Tbilisi should not be anxious: the flight paths are also safe. Passengers who want to change the date of their flight should visit the LOT official website. What is more, special telephone lines have been activated for those who do not have access to the internet.
gazeta.pl

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Leaders Meet in Poland

Orban and Tusk

Orban and Tusk

The presidents of Poland and the USA have invited the leaders of Central and Eastern Europen states to a meeting that will be held in June when Poland will celebrate the 25th anniversary of its first post-war (partially) free elections. Jaromir Sokołowski, a mnister in the Presidential Office responsible for foreign affairs informed the public of the meeting. The presidents of the NATO states Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenia and Croatia all received invitations to the meeting. It will take place in Warsaw on 3 June and will focus on the Ukrainian crisis and Russian aggression towards Ukraine, security in the region, including energy security, as well as preparation for the upcoming NATO summit in Wales.
wiadomosci.onet.pl

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Pseudo-referendum in Ukraine

Same Again?

Same Again?

The ‘referendum’ is just another chapter in the division of Ukraine. Donald Tusk said that Poland will not recognise the results of any ‘pseudo-referenda’. “The Polish government and administration have no doubts that we are dealing with a sophisticated form of aggression,” he added. “When we met last time, after the annexation of Crimea, steps had been taken by external powers to attempt a partition of the Ukrainian state. Everything indicated that this was not the end of the Ukrainian drama. Unfortunately, it is still playing out before our very eyes,” said the Polish Prime Minister. Donald Tusk explained that the referenda held in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions fail to comply with “any standards and they are just another step on the path to partitioning Ukraine”. According to Tusk, the referenda organised by separatists in eastern Ukraine have nothing in common with democracy. Moreover, they mock democracy, he added. “They are destroying our Ukrainian neighbour. I hope that, unlike Crimea, no one in the world has any doubt that we are dealing with interference by one country in the affairs of another,” noted Donald Tusk.
wiadomosci.gazeta.pl

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