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Poland ditches Ukraine border meeting called by Zelenskyy

Ukrainian PM Denys Shmyhal stood up at the border when Polish officials failed to appear for talks proposed by Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
Poland ditches Ukraine border meeting called by Zelenskyy
Ukrainian PM Denys Shmyhal and other Ukrainian officials at the border with Poland. Photo:
Poland ditches Ukraine border meeting called by Zelenskyy

A proposed border meeting between Ukrainian and Polish officials did not occur on Thursday, according to Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal. He arrived at the border checkpoint hoping to address the blockade by Polish protesters, but Polish officials did not show up.

“We understand the difficulties faced by the Polish government. The President of Ukraine offered the Polish leadership a platform to agree and find a compromise – here at the border, as equal partners and allies. Unfortunately, such a meeting with Polish officials did not take place today,” Shmyhal wrote in a Telegram post.

Shmyhal was joined at the border by other Ukrainian officials, including two Vice Prime Ministers, the Minister of Internal Affairs, and the Minister of Agrarian Policy and Food.

Earlier on 23 February, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said during a briefing in Lviv that a group of Ukrainian officials would go to the Polish border that day to meet with Polish counterparts. However, he said he did not know if Poland would participate.

On 21 February, Zelenskyy himself proposed the border meeting to unblock Ukraine’s borders. He said he would also be willing to attend.

Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk later rejected the proposal as “unnecessary symbolism,” while President Andrzej Duda was open to dialogue.

Polish protesters have blocked Ukrainian border crossings for four months, demanding Warsaw and the EU ban Ukraine’s grain imports. However, Ukraine’s exports do not currently reach Poland due to Warsaw’s embargo, violating the EU-Ukraine trade deal.

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