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Israel’s president to visit Poland in April

22.03.2023 10:30
Israel’s President Isaac Herzog will visit Poland next month to mark 80 years since the 1943 Warsaw Ghetto Uprising against the Germans, the Polish foreign ministry spokesman said on Wednesday.
Polish foreign ministry HQ in Warsaw.
Polish foreign ministry HQ in Warsaw.Gnesener1900, CC BY-SA 3.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Łukasz Jasina announced Herzog’s visit in an interview with Polish Radio.

Jasina told the Polish public broadcaster that Israel’s Foreign Minister Eli Cohen would visit Warsaw later on Wednesday in preparation for the Israeli president’s April visit. 

Agreement on youth trips   

Poland’s foreign ministry announced last week that it had reached "an initial agreement" with Israel to resume visits by organized groups of Israeli youth to Poland.

The Polish foreign ministry spokesman said on Wednesday that the agreement could help "move Polish-Israeli relations forward."

Jasina told Polish Radio that the agreement to resume school Holocaust trips “has a preliminary nature so far.”

He said: “Every agreement becomes meaningful when it is signed and ratified.”

Polish, Israeli FMs to hold talks on Wednesday

Jasina said that Israel’s Cohen would hold talks with Poland’s top diplomat Zbigniew Rau later in the day, before a wider meeting between Polish and Israeli officials.

The spokesman added that “it’s possible" that Rau and Cohen "will sign the agreement" on youth trips.

Israel’s foreign minister was also due to visit Warsaw’s Museum of the History of Polish Jews and lay flowers at the Monument to the Ghetto Heroes, according to officials. 

Jasina said: “This trip is a prelude to the visit of Israel’s President Isaac Herzog in April to mark the 80th anniversary of the start of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.” 

He added: “It’s a highly important trip and it is my hope that Polish officials and our Israeli partners will hold talks that will bring us closer to resolving certain problems.” 

Jasina told Polish Radio that Warsaw was hoping to "resolve certain issues to do with the treatment of Poles in Israel.” 

Rite of passage

Young Jewish Israelis traditionally take summer trips to Poland, including visits to former Nazi-built death camps to study the Holocaust and pay tribute to those murdered, The Times of Israel has reported.

The trip has long been considered a rite of passage in Israeli education and, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, some 40,000 Israeli students participated each year, according to the timesofisrael.com website.

However, in June last year the tours were halted due to a dispute over their content and security issues, according to news reports.


Source: IAR, PAP, polskieradio24.pl

Click on the audio player above to listen to a report by Radio Poland's Ada Janiszewska.