The President of Poland supports the dialogue with Ukraine against the background of the blockade of the border by the Poles

Liza Brovko

Polish Presidential Affairs Minister Andrzej Dera reported that Andrzej Duda is in favor of the negotiations proposed by President Volodymyr Zelensky to resolve the situation at the border.

He said this on TVN24.

The Polish president is in favor of conducting a dialogue between the agrarians and the Ukrainian side, and his minister Dera considers the situation "catastrophic on both sides."

"Mr. President is doing everything in this spirit to support and help Ukraine. Letʼs not forget that everything that is currently happening on the border, this conflict with grain, with agricultural products, is the result of the war," the official added.

Andrzej Dera said that the idea of meeting the governments of the two countries at the border is "not the safest", saying that it would be better to hold negotiations in Warsaw or somewhere in Rzeszów or Lublin. However, he understands the symbolism of the conversation on the border.

"This whole conflict stems from the fact that in Ukraine the standards of agricultural production are different from European ones. Thatʼs why the price for these products in Ukraine is different, and thatʼs why Polish farmers today are fighting for their survival and existence," said the minister.

  • Due to the Polesʼ blockade of Ukraineʼs western border, Volodymyr Zelensky instructed the government to be at the border with Poland by February 24 and asked Prime Minister Donald Tusk to come there as well, urging Duda to support the governmentʼs dialogue.
  • From November 2023, Poles periodically block checkpoints on the border with Ukraine. Polish carriers, and then farmers, have been obstructing the movement of trucks for varying lengths of time, demanding from their authorities and the European Union to improve working conditions and preferences. They are asking for a ban on the import of agricultural products from Ukraine that do not meet EU standards, the return of the permit system for Ukrainian transporters, subsidies for fertilizers, compensation for excise duty on fuel, payment of subsidies, and have other demands that have nothing to do with Ukraine.
  • On February 20, Polish farmers began a general strike across the country. The Association of Hunters joined them. Protesters blocked six checkpoints on the border with Ukraine. But in the evening of the same day, traffic restrictions at three checkpoints were eased.
  • In response, Ukrainian carriers blocked three points. The action will last until March 15 or until the borders are unblocked by Polish demonstrators. Carriers say they will let in Polish trucks with the same delay as Poles let in Ukrainian trucks.