‘Half of Europe’ wants better ties with Russia – Polish deputy PM
Polish Deputy Prime Minister Piotr Glinski has lamented the fact that there is still a “threat” that relations between Russia and EU countries could return to the way they were before the current rift. He blasted opposition parties in Poland, as well as “half of Europe,” for harboring hopes of improving ties with Moscow.
Speaking to the Kurier Lubelski news outlet, Glinski was asked if he believed that Warsaw was “in danger” of returning to “naive” politics when, for example, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was invited to meet with Polish ambassadors in Warsaw in 2010 in an effort to improve bilateral relations.
“Unfortunately, the threat of a return to these relationships still exists,” he replied.
Glinski claimed that the government’s “political rivals” as well as their voters are “hostage to interest groups that only think about ending the war in Ukraine as soon as possible and continue to be a client of Russia and do business with it,” adding that “half of Europe is like that, waiting for it.”
The deputy prime minister’s comments come as Polish Secretary of State Marcin Przydacz also told the Financial Times on Tuesday that Warsaw plans to demand World War II reparations from Russia, just as it has done from Germany, from which it is requesting some €1.3 trillion ($1.43 trillion).
“We treat Berlin and Moscow in a different-civilization way,” Przydacz told the outlet, noting that once there is “success” in squeezing cash out of Germany, the next step would be to “launch such a discussion with the other oppressor.”
Brussels, meanwhile, has accused Poland of sliding towards authoritarianism under its current leadership, while Jana Puglierin, the head of the Berlin office of the European Council on Foreign Relations, suggested that the right-wing PiS party is prioritizing electoral success rather than focusing on establishing constructive relationships.
Moscow has responded to the recent comments from Warsaw by stating that “nothing good” can be expected in Russian-Polish relations in the near future. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov noted on Tuesday that “Russophobia,” which has “gripped” the minds of Polish authorities “absolutely deprives them of sobriety in their approach to everything related to Russia” and prevents them from taking “intelligible or thoughtful steps.”