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Polish, Slovak FMs discuss support for Ukraine, energy ties

25.05.2023 20:00
Poland’s top diplomat met with his Slovak counterpart on Thursday for talks on bilateral and regional cooperation, further support for Ukraine and preparations for an upcoming summit of the NATO alliance, of which both countries are members, officials said.
Polands Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau (right) and Slovakias Miroslav Wlachovsk (left) hold a joint news conference after their talks in Warsaw on Thursday, May 25, 2023.
Poland’s Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau (right) and Slovakia’s Miroslav Wlachovský (left) hold a joint news conference after their talks in Warsaw on Thursday, May 25, 2023.PAP/Albert Zawada

At a joint news conference afterwards, Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau described neighbouring Slovakia as one of Poland’s most "important political and economic partners in central Europe, as well as in the European Union."

Rau said: “In light of the current challenges, our security and defence cooperation is gaining importance.”

He added: “In this context, Polish-Slovak cooperation within NATO is of particular significance.” 

Rau told reporters that he and Slovakia’s newly appointed top diplomat Miroslav Wlachovský discussed bilateral cooperation in the run-up to NATO's Vilnius summit in July.

Support for Ukraine 

The Polish foreign minister also told reporters that the two countries were "unanimous" in their "condemnation of Russia’s criminal, illegal and unprovoked aggression, supported by the Belarusian regime, against our shared neighbour Ukraine.”

He added: “Together with other allies and partners, we’ll be taking all the possible measures under international law to support Kyiv and help Ukraine regain full independence and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders.”

Closer energy ties

Rau said Poland and Slovakia were also seeking “to deepen bilateral cooperation in the field of energy and infrastructure.”

He added that the construction of a gas interconnector from Poland to Slovakia was "an important part of the plan to build a regional north-south gas corridor and is a reflection of energy solidarity both in the bilateral and regional dimension.”

‘Ukraine must be supported for as long as it takes’: Slovak FM 

Meanwhile, Slovakia’s Wlachovský said he and Rau had discussed the situation in Ukraine and further assistance for Kyiv’s war effort against the Russian invasion, the PAP news agency reported.

He added that the talks had also focused on preparations for the June summit of the Bucharest Nine bloc of NATO’s eastern-flank allies in Bratislava and NATO's July summit in Vilnius, Lithuania. 

Wlachovský told reporters that Slovakia “immediately and firmly” condemned Russia’s full-scale aggression in Ukraine, and was providing political, humanitarian and military support for Kyiv.  

He urged his country's EU and NATO allies to maintain “unity and solidarity on the issue of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine," saying that "this unity and solidarity must not run out” and that "Ukraine must be supported for as long as it takes," according to the PAP news agency.

Wlachovský also "underlined the importance of bilateral cooperation with Poland,” according to officials.  

Thursday is day 456 of Russia’s war on Ukraine.


Source: IAR, PAP, gov.pl