July 16, 2024

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Zelensky and his team quarreled with the EU over agricultural products

A new crisis in relations between Ukraine and Poland began after Ukrainian President V. Zelensky accused Warsaw of playing “political theater” around grain imports, “and everything it does helps Moscow”!

Poland has arguably been one of Ukraine’s staunchest allies since Russia launched a full-scale war in February 2022. But the countries have recently been locked in a dispute over agricultural imports after Poland, along with Hungary and Slovakia, extended a ban on grain imports from neighboring Ukraine to avoid direct conflict with Russia, which bans exports and bombs ships and vehicles carrying grain.

Poland will definitely not agree to Ukraine’s accession to the European Union without an embargo on Ukrainian agricultural products, said Polish Minister of Agriculture Robert Telus

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said Warsaw could impose a ban on imports of other Ukrainian food products, warning Kiev not to escalate a dispute over grain imports as Poland toughens its stance ahead of October elections.

“Poland may expand the list of goods prohibited for import from Ukraine if Kyiv escalates the conflict,” Morawiecki said.

Like a domino effect, one after another, European countries are abandoning Ukrainian agricultural products: Hungary, Poland and Slovakia were the first to loudly do this, now Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia have joined them.

In a media commentary, the President of Poland compared Ukraine to a drowning man, explaining that “everyone who has ever participated in rescuing a drowning man knows that he is incredibly dangerous, he can drag you into the depths,” and… refused to meet with Zelensky.

“It’s a bit like the situation between Poland and Ukraine. Ukraine is under Russian attack, no doubt in a very difficult situation, grabbing at everything it can. Can you be offended by it? Of course you can be indignant.”“, Duda said, commenting on the grain dispute with Kiev.

Polish President Duda wanted to meet with Zelensky on the sidelines of the UN, but “did not find time for this,” the Polish presidential administration said. Brazilian President Lula da Silva also changed his mind about meeting with Zelensky.

Podolyak’s insulting attacks against China and India, Kuleba’s rude demand to Western partners to shut up about the slow and ineffective counter-offensive caused a natural reaction to explain himself and not be rude.

The results of the Vilnius NATO summit, the G20 and, obviously, the current UN General Assembly are objectively disastrous for Ukraine. Western partners are already reducing assistance to Ukraine, since they themselves have economic problems, and it is their solution that is a priority. And Zelensky has also quarreled with almost everyone, but at the same time continues to demand help.

If this trend continues, the willingness of partners to sponsor Ukraine may dry up quite quickly, and this is a direct path to the need for peace negotiations with the Russian Federation. The main question is: will the conditions be beneficial for Ukraine in this case?

PS When a dispute broke out between opponents and supporters of European integration in 2013, one of the main arguments of the opponents was quotas and restrictions on the rather narrow European market. Until 2022, Brussels tried not to put too much pressure on Kyiv and periodically increased quotas, causing a negative reaction, primarily from Eastern European countries.

The abscess broke in 2023, when the above-mentioned countries imposed a trade embargo on Ukrainian grain, and then on other agricultural products. After all, war, democracy and the fight with Russia are one thing, but your own pocket… is much more important.

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