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Duda: Grain dispute will not disrupt good relations between Poland, Ukraine

by Nate Ostiller September 23, 2023 12:39 PM 1 min read
Polish President Andrzej Duda (L) walks with President Volodymyr Zelensky during his visit to Warsaw on April 5, 2023. (Ukraine's Presidential Office)
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The disagreement over grain exports should not upend Polish-Ukrainian relations, Polish President Andrzej Duda said on Sept. 22, according to Polish news agency TVP World.

The spat about grain exports has escalated tensions between Poland and Ukraine in recent days, but Duda said that the grain dispute is just "an absolute fragment of the Polish-Ukrainian relations" and that it should not threaten the close ties between the two countries.

In comments at the Common Future Congress for the Reconstruction of Ukraine held in Poznań, Duda said that "we need to resolve this matter between us."

Earlier in the day, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki forcefully responded to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's speech at the U.N. General Assembly, stating that he "should never insult Poles again."

During his speech at the U.N. headquarters in New York, Zelensky called out the "alarming" behavior of Ukraine's partners regarding the grain import bans. The president said these nations are inadvertently aiding Russia by their actions.

While not naming specific countries, the statement came shortly after Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia said they would prolong the import restrictions.

On Sept. 20, Morawiecki announced that Poland would stop transferring weapons to Ukraine, a statement that the Polish Foreign Ministry said had likely been made without their consultation and was probably misconstrued in media reports.

The BBC connected the grain dispute to the weapons announcement, and other media outlets have linked the increasingly strong language used by the Polish government towards Ukraine as an electoral tactic ahead of the upcoming Polish parliamentary elections set for Oct. 15.

The ruling conservative Law and Justice (PiS) party is leading the polls.

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