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Russia is committing war crimes: Polish PM in Austria

The Russian military is committing “regular war crimes, that’s why we have to cut off this war’s oxygen (…) What is this oxygen for Putin’s war machine? First of all the money coming from the oligarchs, from oil, gas and from other commodities he [Putin] exports.” Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said on Wednesday in Vienna after meeting with Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer.

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The head of the Polish government met with the Austrian chancellor, among others in Vienna. During a press conference, Morawiecki outlined the four main areas of his conversation with Nehammer: sanctions, refugees, security and borders.

Russia is committing war crimes

The PM stressed that Russia had not attacked Ukraine with half-measures. “Russia conducted a full-scale attack on Ukrainian cities, villages with its military, which today is committing war crimes. We have evidence of this, we will present this evidence, Ukraine will also present this evidence,” Mateusz Morawiecki stated.

“Today we must also realise that beyond our eastern border, in Ukraine, a new geopolitical order of the world is being forged,” the PM added.

He noted that today or tomorrow the number of refugees in Poland will exceed 1.5 million. “90 percent of them are women and children, the most vulnerable citizens,” Prime Minister Morawiecki said.

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The importance of energy independence

The head of the Polish government also talked about the importance of energy independence from Russia. Over the past five years, we have built the Baltic gas pipeline to Norway and in six months we will be independent, for the first time in decades, from Russian gas, he emphasised.

The PM also referred to security issues, namely border protection and raw material independence.

“We must also give hope for a new Marshall Plan for a sovereign Ukraine after the war, which should end as soon as possible. European Union member states want to participate in the rapid reconstruction, we want to give hope to Ukraine for the fast reconstruction of an independent Ukrainian state,” the prime minister assured.

Not all Russians are to blame

In turn, the Austrian Chancellor appealed to the Russians to ensure the functioning of humanitarian corridors to the besieged cities of Ukraine. “This is an obligation. I appeal to the Russian Federation to implement it,” he urged.

“At the moment Russian men and women are also resisting the policies of the Russian government. They are also very courageous people; their courage is comparable to that of the Ukrainians who are defending their country,” assessed the Austrian chancellor. He pointed out that one cannot treat all Russians equally, because not all of them react with indifference to the invasion of Ukraine.

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