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Submitted by JP on Mon, 02/05/2024 - 17:13
Polish FM Urges Strong Signal to Putin

EU diplomatic chief Josep Borrell suggested on Monday in Warsaw that member states consider a temporary pause in weapon exports to countries, excluding Ukraine. He urged governments to make a "political decision" and increase support by supplying more ammunition. - As the second anniversary of Russian aggression approaches, it's increasingly important to signal to Putin that this conquest is in vain, the cost for Russia is enormous, and internationally recognized borders should be restored - urged Polish Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski today.

The talks between the heads of Polish and EU diplomacies, Radosław Sikorski and Josep Borrell, focused on the situation in Ukraine. Photo by Tomasz Gzell/PAP

During a press conference with EU diplomatic chief Josep Borrell, Radosław Sikorski, the foreign minister of Poland, urged the US Congress to adopt an aid package for Ukraine after the European Union agreed to launch a EUR 50 billion (USD 53.7 billion) aid package for Kyiv last Thursday. "I urge, but I think it is our common position, the US Congress to finally pass the US aid package" - Sikorski stated on Monday. 

"I am on my way to Ukraine. I am on my way to Kyiv, and I wanted to make a stop-over in Warsaw because certainly, we have to make consultations with our Polish friends in order to understand better what is going on in Ukraine and how we can continue our support" - Josep Borrell said in Warsaw. "Poland has shown remarkable solidarity providing support to Ukraine across all dimensions, including militarily,", Borrell added.

The EU diplomatic chief urged the EU countries to stop exporting weapons and send them to Ukraine instead. "I think we can say that we agreed that not only we have to support Ukraine for as long as it takes, but for whatever it takes. It is not just a matter of time, it is a matter of quantity and quality of our supplies. Certainly, we have to do more and quicker, because Ukraine has to prevail. Ukraine is fighting but it is also fighting for the European security", Josep Borrell said in Warsaw. He highlighted that, in addition to the planned donation of 520,000 artillery shells by March, European companies were actively engaging in substantial commercial arms sales to Ukraine. 

The high representative of the EU for foreign affairs and security policy Josep Borrell suggested in Warsaw that EU member states should consider a temporary pause in weapon exports to countries other than Ukraine, allowing for a more extensive supply of ammunition to Kiev.

Radosław Sikorski, Poland's foreign affairs minister, enthusiastically endorsed Borrell's proposal. "I wholeheartedly support it," he said. "Ukraine is still outgunned by the Russians on the front and we need to help level the balance." 

Among European Union member states, only Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, and Sweden possess the capability to manufacture 155mm artillery shells, as reported by the European Commission.

As the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement on Monday, "at the meeting, officials also discussed Russia's accountability for international crimes committed against Ukraine and the need to use frozen Russian assets to support and rebuild the country. Minister Sikorski recalled Poland’s firm position that it is crucial for the international community to hold accountable both Russia as a state and all individual perpetrators of the crimes committed by Russian forces on Ukrainian territory, as well as to require the aggressor state to cover the costs of reconstruction for the country it attacked".

This piece has been updated with new details.