On Friday, Polish President Andrzej Duda visited Tallin to meet with his Estonian counterpart Alar Karis and open the 15th Lennart Meri Conference. During a joint press conference with the Estonian President, the Polish head of state emphasised the need for economic and military cooperation as well as the need to help Ukraine.
The Polish President spoke about the history of Estonia and Poland, and how both countries struggled to obtain their independence from superpowers like the Soviet Union. “We managed to regain all this only after 1989, only at the end of the 20th century,” he said.
He also indicated that he will discuss the most pressing issues with his Estonian counterpart. Mainly security issues related to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, the possibility of Finland joining NATO and the role of European countries in helping Ukraine win the fight against Moscow.
“Today we can organise aid. We can also discuss sanctions with our allies and our colleagues. We can apply various modern solutions that are painful for Russia, that show Russia clearly and explicitly that it does not rule the world and will not rule the world. And especially our world,” Andrzej Duda siad.
He also expressed hope that “the forthcoming summit of the North Atlantic Alliance in Madrid will make the necessary decisions, not only that the NATO presence in our region will be strengthened. Not only that brigade combat troops will be created. Not only that there will be a significant increase in the number of Alliance troops present on our territory and providing security guarantees. But also that the defence infrastructure of the North Atlantic Alliance in our area will be significantly improved, that it will be primarily an anti-access infrastructure, providing security against air attacks, missile attacks,” President Duda emphasised.
The head of the Polish state also urged European countries “to support Ukraine with all your might, both militarily, by sending modern weaponry, as well as in humanitarian terms and simply in human terms.”
Very happy to welcome my dear Polish friend @AndrzejDuda here in Kadriorg! We will discuss European security, including forthcoming #NATO Summit and our continued support to #Ukraine, and also will focus on strengthening relations between #Estonia and #Poland. pic.twitter.com/HSfkDe7WTU
— Alar Karis (@AlarKaris) May 13, 2022
Putin has to pay
In turn, the President of Estonia stressed that “the suffering of Ukrainians and Ukraine is a burden for President (Vladimir) Putin, who has to pay for it.”
“Russia wanted to weaken the European Union and NATO. With this aggression, they have achieved the exact opposite of that. The EU and NATO are more united and stronger than ever before,” he declared. He also stressed that helping Ukraine “must be our daily concern”. The Estonian president also pointed out that Ukraine should be granted EU candidate status.
“The war started by the Kremlin in the heart of Europe brings Finland and probably also Sweden to NATO, this also means that the Baltic Sea will be NATO’s internal sea, which makes our security even stronger,” he added.
Furthermore, President Duda stated that “Even if the war ends, it will mean that there must be consequences.”
“Ukraine must be recovered within internationally recognised borders. Russia must pay reparations for what it has destroyed in Ukraine and the people responsible for war crimes in Ukraine must face criminal consequences,” Andrzej Duda said.
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