Speaking at a joint news conference in Warsaw with his visiting Moldovan counterpart, Duda said that Poland “will always stand up for Moldova as part of the international community.”
"We absolutely believe that it is necessary to preserve the territorial integrity of Moldova within its internationally recognized borders,” Duda told reporters.
“This is a fundamental issue and we will always support Moldova in all its efforts aimed at ensuring this integrity," he added.
Polish President Andrzej Duda (right) and Moldova’s Maia Sandu (left) meet in Warsaw on Monday. Photo: PAP/Marcin Obara
Duda told reporters after holding talks with the Moldovan president that Poland was ready to share its democratic transition experience with that country.
"We have a lot of experience in this area and the changes that have taken place in Poland over the last 30 years are now producing many positive results,” he said.
Moldova’s visiting pro-EU President Maia Sandu told reporters that her country “has chosen a path of European modernization," as evidenced, she said, by the outcome of last year’s presidential election.
She voiced hope that “Moldova’s European path will be confirmed" during an early parliamentary election in the country on July 11.
Sandu thanked Poland for its “consistent help” in advancing her country’s European aspirations and in helping Moldova access EU funds as part of the bloc’s aid programmes.
A welcoming ceremony for Maia Sandu in the Polish capital on Monday morning. Photo: PAP/Marcin Obara
Sandu arrived in Warsaw on Monday to discuss a range of bilateral and international issues with Duda.
Topics up for discussion between the two leaders included "bilateral cooperation, regional security and prospects for strengthening Moldova's integration with Euro-Atlantic structures," according to Krzysztof Szczerski, a top aide to the Polish head of state.
Szczerski said ahead of the visit that "a democratic and pro-European Moldova may become a key partner for Poland in a strategic geopolitical region ... between the Euro-Atlantic world and the Russian sphere of influence."
He added, as quoted by Poland's PAP news agency, that Poland could offer Moldova "expert assistance in carrying out local government reform, along with training for Moldovan civil servants, and help in the process of preparing sector reforms, which are the best way to edge closer to the European Union."
Support for Moldova’s 'European path'
At the end of last year, Poland's Duda and several other Central European leaders congratulated Sandu on being sworn in as the new president of Moldova.
Sandu, a former World Bank economist who favors closer ties with the European Union, was installed as the first female president of Moldova after taking the oath of office at a ceremony in Chisinau in late December.
In a joint statement with his counterparts from six other Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries, the Polish president said at the time that Sandu “has been given a strong mandate from the citizens of the Republic of Moldova, who expect changes, a more ambitious reform agenda, democracy and closer ties with the EU.”
In their joint statement, Poland’s Duda, Lithuania’s Gitanas Nausėda, Estonia’s Kersti Kaljulaid, Romania’s Klaus Iohannis, Latvia’s Egils Levits, the Czech Republic’s Miloš Zeman and Slovakia’s Zuzana Čaputová expressed their “full support” for Sandu in “her efforts to consolidate the implementation of reforms based on democratic values, fundamental freedoms and the rule of law.”
“We stand by President Maia Sandu in her endeavours to establish a functioning democratic system in the Republic of Moldova that reflects the will of the citizens of the Republic of Moldova,” the seven presidents said.
“We are also ready to share our reform and European integration experience that could contribute to the prosperity and wellbeing of the Republic of Moldova on its path towards the European Union,” they added.
They reiterated their countries’ “unwavering support” for Moldova’s “independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity” and “the European path” chosen by that country’s citizens.
Sandu was elected in November after defeating pro-Moscow incumbent Igor Dodon in a tight race, news agencies reported.
Source: IAR, PAP, Reuters, prezydent.pl