Skip to content
Edit post

Zelensky: Partnership between Ukraine and Poland makes Europe stronger

by Elsa Court and The Kyiv Independent news desk November 11, 2023 10:51 PM 3 min read
Protesters hold a massive Ukrainian flag during the rally, marking Ukraine's Independence Day in Warsaw, Poland, on Aug. 24, 2023. (Attila Husejnow/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
This audio is created with AI assistance

Support independent journalism in Ukraine. Join us in this fight.

Become a member Support us just once

President Volodymyr Zelensky marked Poland's Independence Day and offered his congratulations "on behalf of the Ukrainian people" in a post on X on Nov. 11.

The partnership between Ukraine and Poland "makes both of us and our entire Europe stronger," he said.

"Ukraine and Poland are united in their will for freedom and we will always stand together. In the EU, NATO, and throughout our shared history."

He highlighted the support shown by Poland since the first days of the full-scale invasion. Between Feb. 24, 2022 and March 15, 2022, an estimated 1.8 million people crossed the Ukrainian-Polish border.

"Ukrainians will never lose gratitude to Poland," Zelensky wrote, thanking the Polish people "for the respect shown to all Ukrainians who have been accepted into Poles' homes."

While Poland has been one of Ukraine's biggest backers and a key partner since the beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion in February 2022, tensions have been rising between the two countries in recent months.

A dispute about grain exports emerged in September, after Poland, together with Slovakia and Hungary, announced they would implement their own bans on Ukrainian grain imports despite the European Commission's decision to end the embargo on Sept. 15.

The Commission had imposed a ban on sales of certain Ukrainian agricultural products in May in five EU countries that border Ukraine.

Allies in discord: Roots of recent quarrel between Poland and Ukraine
Over the past year, allied nations Poland and Ukraine went from displays of enthusiastic support and gratitude to trading veiled accusations in the UN General Assembly. When Russia launched a full-scale invasion, Poland took the initiative to provide weapons to Ukraine and called on others to do th…

The countries had requested the measure due to fears from local farmers that cheap Ukrainian imports would drive down agriculture prices, but the European Commission ended the embargo as data indicated that Ukrainian imports would no longer have a negative impact.

Zelensky called out the "alarming" behavior of Ukraine's partners during a speech at the U.N. headquarters in New York on Sept. 19. Zelensky did not name the countries but said that these nations are inadvertently "helping to set the stage" for Moscow.

In response, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Sept. 22 that Zelensky should "never insult Poles."

Polish President Andrzej Duda played down the spat the next day, and said that an the issue was an "absolute fragment of the Polish-Ukrainian relations."

The dispute was brought to the World Trade Organization, but Ukraine announced on Oct. 5 it would put its complaint on hold, while looking to find a "constructive solution."

A new issue arose after Polish truck drivers announced on Nov. 6 they would block multiple border crossings with Ukraine in protest against Ukrainian trucks.

The Polish truckers are demanding renewed restrictions on the number of Ukrainian trucks permitted in Poland, claiming that the lack of such restrictions was hurting business for Polish drivers.

They are also calling for a ban on transportation companies from outside the European Union.

The transport of humanitarian cargo, buses, and private vehicles can pass through, albeit at a much slower pace.

Ukraine's Infrastructure Ministry said on Nov. 11 that they will meet the Polish authorities at the border to try to diffuse the situation and end the blockade.

News Feed

Ukraine Daily
News from Ukraine in your inbox
Ukraine news
Please, enter correct email address
1:56 AM  (Updated: )

Trump shot at during Pennsylvania rally.

At a rally in Pennsylvania, gunshots were reportedly fired at former U.S. President Donald Trump, prompting security staff to rush him off stage.
10:47 PM

Kremlin spokesman threatens Europe over decision to host US missiles.

"Our country is in the crosshairs of American missiles located in Europe. We've been through all this before," he said in an interview with Russian TV propagandist Pavel Zarubin. "We have enough potential to deter these missiles. But the capitals of these states are potential victims."
9:18 PM

Chief emergency worker among two killed in Kharkiv Oblast.

Half an hour after emergency workers arrived at the scene, Russian troops launched a second attack on the same location, Artem Kostyria, head of the State Emergency Situations Service's branch in Kharkiv Oblast, and police sergeant Oleksiy Koshchii.
5:24 PM

Russian kamikaze drone flies deep inside Belarus, whereabouts unknown.

The Belarusian Hajun monitoring group reported it had flown 250 kilometers "over Gomel and Zhlobyn, entered the Mogilev region, and then the Minsk region." It also said a Belarusian Mi-24 helicopter and Su-30 fighter jet were scrambled to intercept the drone before it "presumably flew to Vitebsk."
3:37 PM

US developing new 'extended-range' missile for Ukraine's Air Force.

The new weapon to be developed is an Extended-Range Attack Munition (ERAM), that aims to be a low-cost, quick to produce air-launched missile with a range of around 460 kilometers. The manufacture of the weapon is intended to begin no later than two years after the awarding of the contract and up to 1,000 are to be produced each year.
3:19 PM

Children's theater goes underground in Kharkiv

In the heart of Kharkiv, Kharkiv Theater for Children and Youth performs in bomb shelters under constant threats of Russian attacks. The Kyiv Independent visited one of the theater's performances in late June to meet the dedicated actors and their no less dedicated audience.
10:46 AM

Poland considers downing Russian missiles over Ukraine, FM says.

Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski said the problem for Warsaw is that once downed, the debris could pose a threat to Poles and the country's property. "At this stage, this is an idea. What our agreement said is we will explore this idea," he added.
MORE NEWS

Editors' Picks

Enter your email to subscribe
Please, enter correct email address
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Successfuly subscribed
Thank you for signing up for this newsletter. We’ve sent you a confirmation email.