Warsaw downplays calls to withhold EU payments

The Polish government spokesperson has dismissed a proposal made last week by smaller coalition partner Solidary Poland that Warsaw suspend payments to the EU budget.

"Let’s remember that Poland still obtains more financial inflows than it pays into the EU budget," Piotr Mueller told a press conference on Monday.

Last week, a member of the Council of Ministers, Michal Wojcik, and a deputy climate and environment minister, Jacek Ozdoba, said Solidary Poland had raised the question of suspending EU payments at a cabinet sitting. This would be in retaliation for what they said was the EU's reluctance to increase payments to Poland to co-finance refugee assistance.

"This is not a good move," Mueller said. "This idea changes nothing at all. The EU treaties oblige us to pay into the EU," he said. "I don’t think the government would bend to this request," he added.

Mueller said the government expects the European Council to create a special fund for member states taking in refugees from Ukraine.