Salvini-Kaczyński talks "exploratory," says minister

“My father fought both communism and fascism. Salvini is a long way from being a fascist,” says Polish Minister Anna Maria Anders, daughter of one of Poland’s most famous military leaders. She argues that Poland’s liberal opposition labels all who are against it as fascists, populists or nationalists.

Minister Anders participated in the meeting that took place between Jarosław Kaczyński and Poland’s other ruling party representatives with Italy’s Deputy PM Matteo Salvini on Wednesday. She characterized the meeting as friendly and constructive and was surprised by the negative reaction to it coming from Poland’s opposition, she told wpolityce.pl. 

Anna Maria Anders was critical of the expressions of outrage that the meeting took place. She called it “nonsense” and said that Salvini is an “influential politician who may one day head the Italian government. We are not going to cut ourselves off from the world to please the opposition.”

We are not going to cut ourselves off from the world to please the opposition

The Polish official confirmed that no undertakings had been made and that these were purely exploratory talks. She confirmed that one of the topics of the meeting was immigration and that Jarosław Kaczyński was grateful to Matteo Salvini for protecting Southern Europe from illegal migration. Salvini in turn emphasized that the main target of his efforts was to stop the human traffickers. 

Anders denied that any concrete proposals for EU reforms had been mentioned at the meeting. On Salvini’s support for Russian President Vladimir Putin the Polish official reported that Salvini had expressed understanding for Polish sensitivities towards Russia but maintained his opposition to sanctions on Russia.

Monte Cassino

Anna Maria Anders was adamant that she had done the right thing in meeting Salvini in her pursuit of maintaining close relations with Italy and a memory of the battle of Monte Cassino. She made the point that Salvini accepted an invitation to a Monte Cassino memorial that celebrated the struggle of Polish troops against fascists. Anna Maria Andres’s father, General Władysław Anders, served as commander of the Second Polish Corps fighting Germans at Monte Cassino in 1944.

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