Poland wants EU to grant candidate member status to Ukraine says PM
Mateusz Morawiecki, the Polish prime minister, has said that, even though he is aware that Poland's proposal is not supported by all EU states, he will try to convince EU leaders to give EU candidate member status to Ukraine.
"Poland believes that Ukraine should be given hope," Morawiecki said after a meeting with his Dutch counterpart Mark Rutte in Warsaw on Monday.
"Poland wants Ukraine to be quickly granted EU member candidate status," he repeated, adding that he would make this appeal during the forthcoming EU summit.
"We have been trying to convince our western partners in Europe to take this first step and make a bold decision as Ukraine needs this, needs this hope," Morawiecki told reporters.
Referring to his talks with Rutte, Morawiecki said that EU sanctions on Russia were among the topics discussed and added that EU unity on this issue was very important.
"(Vladimir - PAP) Putin must know that every successive war crime - and war crimes were another topic of our meeting - will be followed by new sanctions," Morawiecki said, adding that the Kremlin had been made aware of such warnings.
The Dutch prime minister expressed readiness to hit the Russian regime as hard as possible, either by means of sanctions or arms supplies to Ukraine. He added that aggression against a sovereign and democratic nation was unacceptable.
Mark Rutte also said that Russian President Vladimir Putin had made a serious mistake by starting a war on the European continent. He also praised Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and the Ukrainian people for their heroic struggle against Russia's criminal activities.
Morawiecki added that assistance for war refugees from Ukraine was another subject of talks with his Dutch counterpart.
Referring to the huge number of war refugees who fled Ukraine to Poland, the Polish prime minister said that, in 2015 and 2016, when a large number of refugees had remained in Turkey, the European Commission quickly decided to financially support that country with two EUR 3-billion tranches.
Since February 24, when Russia invaded Ukraine, 2,125,000 people have crossed the Polish-Ukrainian border into Poland, the Border Guard (SG) tweeted on Monday afternoon.