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Deputy FM says EP resolution on Russia a signal to some EU governments

Mateusz Marek/PAP

A Polish deputy foreign minister has said a European Parliament (EP) resolution passed on Wednesday branding Russia a ‘state sponsor of terrorism’ should be a signal for the governments of some EU countries that have been reluctant to define Russia as such.

The EP adopted the resolution by 494 votes to 58 with 44 abstentions.

The resolution recalled that Russia continues to deny responsibility for the shooting down of a Malaysia Airlines plane over Ukraine in 2014 and refuses to cooperate with international bodies and the international legal order. It also highlighted the fact that Russia has refused to hand over the wreckage and black box of a Polish government jet that crashed in western Russia in 2010 killing all 96 people on board, including at that time Poland’s President Lech Kaczynski and his wife.

The resolution went on to express steadfast support for Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders and condemned Russia’s aggression against its western neighbour.

Piotr Wawrzyk said the fact that the resolution was supported by some MEPs from member states previously reluctant to brand Moscow a sponsor of terror should send a signal to their governments.

“On the one hand, European Parliament resolutions have no power, they express the views of MEPs,” Wawrzyk told PAP.

“But actually in this case it is significant that the resolution was also voted for by MEPs of countries that have so far not been inclined to recognise Russia as such a country (sponsoring terrorism – PAP). So perhaps it will induce the governments of these countries to support the Polish position in the matter, which is clear – we believe that Russia should be so defined.”

Asked whether the resolution might herald further steps against Russia, such as excluding it from international organisations including the UN and OSCE (Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe), Wawrzyk said this might happen as a result of the MEPs voicing their opinion. 

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