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No return to normal relations with Russia: Polish FM

23.03.2022 07:15
Poland’s foreign minister has said that there can be no return to "business as usual" with Vladimir Putin’s Russia after its invasion of Ukraine, and urged further sanctions against the Kremlin.
Polands Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau (R) and Swedens top diplomat Ann Linde (L) meet the media after their talks in Warsaw on March 22, 2022.
Poland's Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau (R) and Sweden's top diplomat Ann Linde (L) meet the media after their talks in Warsaw on March 22, 2022.PAP/Radek Pietruszka

Zbigniew Rau’s words came after he met with his Swedish counterpart Ann Linde in Warsaw on Tuesday, news agencies reported.

He told the media afterwards that his talks with Linde had focused on the consequences of Russia’s attack on Ukraine. 

‘New penalties on Russia’

Rau said he and Linde had agreed that “there is no return to normal relations with the Russian regime and further sanctions must be imposed, including on the Russian energy sector,” Poland’s PAP news agency reported.

The Polish foreign minister added: “We also agreed that we need to focus our efforts on supporting Ukraine: politically, financially and by providing military assistance.”

Rau and Linde shared the view that dealing with the mass influx of refugees from Ukraine “requires close cooperation and mutual help among all the member states of the European Union,” the PAP news agency reported.

Rau noted that Poland wanted the bloc to fast-track Ukraine’s application to join the EU, according to PAP.

Joe Biden to make 'key speech' in Warsaw: Polish FM

Looking ahead to US President Joe Biden’s visit in Warsaw later this week, Rau revealed that the American leader would deliver “a key speech” in Poland.

He also said that Warsaw expected the White House “to bolster the eastern flank of the NATO alliance” amid the Russian aggression against Ukraine.  

Polish peacekeeping plan 'on the table’

Asked about Poland’s recent proposal that NATO send a peacekeeping mission to war-stricken Ukraine, Rau replied that the plan “is on the table” awaiting feedback from NATO allies.

He added that “the situation on the ground in Ukraine calls for new political initiatives.”

Meanwhile, Sweden’s Linde said she was “deeply moved” by the way Polish people were helping and welcoming war refugees from Ukraine.

She added that "more and more displaced people" were also arriving in her country.

Linde stated: “We absolutely agree that we must keep supporting Ukrainians in the form of humanitarian aid, but also by sending military equipment and showing unity on sanctions, preparing for further, tough sanctions against Russia and the Putin regime.”

Rau and Linde also discussed the role of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) amid Russia’s war on Ukraine, the PAP news agency reported.

Poland presides over the OSCE this year, while Sweden led the organisation in 2021. 

Wednesday is day 28 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Poland on Tuesday reported it had taken in more than 2.15 million refugees fleeing Russia's attack on Ukraine.


Source: IAR, PAP