President Zelensky visits Poland

President Zelensky visits Poland


Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky arrived in Poland on Wednesday morning for his first official visit to the country, one of Kiev's most important allies defending itself against Russian aggression.

“Mr. the president crossed the Polish border. He is on Polish territory,” Marcin Przydacz, an adviser to the Polish presidency, told TVN24 television, without giving details.

The detailed program for this one-day visit has not unveiled, apart from the official welcoming ceremony in front of the presidential palace at 11:00 a.m. (09:00 GMT) and a public meeting in the courtyard of the royal castle at 6:00 p.m. (16:00 GMT).

A press conference of the two Heads of State is scheduled for 12:50 p.m. (10:50 GMT).

The spokesman for the Ukrainian president, Sergiï Nykyforov, specified that the visit of the Ukrainian president and his wife “includes in particular discussions with the (Polish) president Andrzej Duda, the prime minister Mateusz Morawiecki, the signing of bilateral documents”.

According to him, the head of the Ukrainian state will meet with representatives of Polish companies at a Ukrainian-Polish business forum, the presidents of both houses of parliament, volunteers and relief workers, as well as mayors of cities located on the along the border with Ukraine.

“In the evening, Volodymyr Zelensky will address Poles and Ukrainians living in Poland with a great speech,” Nykyforov said. “It is indeed the first visit of the Ukrainian president to Poland, because (until now) we have been used to traveling through its territory to other countries”, underlined the spokesperson.

Poland is often used as a stopover for international officials on their way to Ukraine by rail.

“Defence is a key subject of the visit, of course. We will talk about defence, the economy, cross-border traffic, including rail connections, and expanding border crossing opportunities,” he said.

“We will talk a lot about the economy, both at the state level and when meeting with companies. We will talk about our European affairs, the sanctions” against Russia, specified Mr. Nykyforov.

According to Mr. Przydacz, it will be a question of drawing up “a plan for the future, so that the Polish businessmen (…) can carry out their projects in Ukraine”, particularly with regard to the reconstruction of this country after the end of the war.

The Heads of State will also discuss delicate “historical issues” between the two countries, dating mainly from the times of the Second World War, added the adviser to the Polish president.

Poland, an EU and NATO country, neighbor of Ukraine, serves as an important logistical platform for Western military and humanitarian aid deliveries.

Warsaw announced on Monday that it had delivered the first MiG-29 fighters promised to Ukraine, just after Slovakia.

Poland also delivered 14 Leopard 2A4 tanks to Ukraine in February-March, as well as a lot of other equipment.

At the beginning of the Russian invasion, the Poles took in massive numbers of Ukrainian refugees.