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Media: Poland claims state defense corporation not invited to forum in Kyiv, Ukraine denies

by Nate Ostiller October 2, 2023 5:15 PM 2 min read
Polish Minister for State Assets Jacek Sasin in Warsaw, Poland on March 29, 2022 (Photo by Mateusz Wlodarczyk/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
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In contradictory comments on Oct. 2, the Polish Minister of State Assets Jacek Sasin said that the largest Polish state-run defense corporation was not invited to the recent Defense Industry Forum in Kyiv, while Ukrainian Ambassador to Poland, Vasyl Svarych, said that Poland was among the first to receive an invitation.

The Defense Industry Forum was held on Sept. 29 in Kyiv, and had participants from 252 companies that stemmed from 30 different countries.

Sasin remarked on the Polish show Radio ZET that the state-run corporation, Polish Armaments Group (PGZ), never received the invitation, characterizing the perceived slight as the latest in a "series of unfriendly gestures from Ukraine." He did not clarify if representatives of the company would have participated in the forum if an invitation had been received.

In contrast, Svarych said in an interview on the Polish tv show TVN 24 that Poland's absence from the forum was "a question for the Polish side, because Poland was among the first to be invited to this event."

Since the beginning of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine, Poland has been one of the most consistent supporters of Ukraine in the EU. According to the Polish Defense Ministry, the country's military aid for Ukraine amounted to 3 billion euro ($3.2 billion) by July. This support included a wide range of weaponry from MiG-29 jets and tanks to armored vehicles and artillery.

This support came into question in Sept. 2023, amidst a dispute between Poland and Ukraine about the export of grain. As tensions rose, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki announced on Sept. 20 that Warsaw would cease further arms shipments to Ukraine, a statement that the Polish Foreign Ministry said the following day was made without their consultation. The ministry clarified that the remarks had been misconstrued, and that arms shipments would continue for now.

Duda: Grain dispute will not disrupt good relations between Poland, Ukraine
The disagreement over grain exports should not upend Polish-Ukrainian relations, Polish President Andrzej Duda said on Sept. 22.
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