Poland and Lithuania had stood shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine long before the full-scale Russian invasion began, and will remain until victory. This aggression is a threat to us all, the ambassadors of Poland, Ukraine, and Lithuania wrote on Friday, the anniversary of the aggression in UK newspaper, Daily Telegraph.
Piotr Wilczek, Vadym Prystajko, and Eitvydas Bajarźnas recalled in a joint article that during the last direct conversation before the Russian attack, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky assured the Polish and Lithuanian presidents, Andrzej Duda and Gitanas Nauseda, that “if Putin controls Ukraine and that his army will simply enter and takes her land, he is gravely mistaken.”
They also recalled how Poland and Lithuania stood shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine long before Russia launched a full-scale brutal attack. When it did, “Poland and Lithuania tirelessly helped their beleaguered neighbor through political, military and humanitarian aid, especially in the Lublin Triangle format”.
The ambassadors pointed out that despite the thousands of dead, the enormity of destruction, and the enormous costs that the reconstruction of Ukraine will require, “through this devastating picture shines a beam of hope. Over the past 12 months, the heroic Ukrainian people have not only defended vast swathes of their motherland but also mounted an extraordinary counteroffensive to push the Russians back, so that they now control only about one-fifth of Ukraine – a fifth too much”.
Moreover, in the face of this tragic turn of events, maintaining transatlantic and pan-European unity and determination is key. Poland and Lithuania inspired NATO allies and EU partners to act in solidarity with Ukraine to an unprecedented extent. We are rebuilding European security architecture by strengthening the eastern flank. Thanks to the efforts of Poland and Lithuania in reaching a consensus in the EU, European leaders formally accepted Ukraine as a candidate for EU membership, they added.
🇵🇱🇺🇦 Poland has delivered the first Leopard 2 battle tanks to Ukraine, the Polish defence minister said on Friday, on the anniversary of Russia's invasion
Read more on our live blog ⤵️https://t.co/K1dkpTOOGv pic.twitter.com/amXTsfxiXn
— The Telegraph (@Telegraph) February 24, 2023
The ambassadors pointed to the leading role by Poland and Lithuania for the adoption by the EU of the sanctions against Russia, which are aimed at weakening Russia’s ability to finance the war, and providing Ukraine with weapons and training its soldiers.
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