Poland’s president thanks Germany for Patriot missile systems

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, right, and his counterpart from Poland, Andrzej Duda, arrive for a news conference after a meeting at Bellevue Palace in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Dec. 12, 2022. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)
By Grzegorz Adamczyk
3 Min Read

Polish President Andrzej Duda visited Germany on Monday to meet German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and thanked Germany for its offer to station Patriot missile systems in Poland.

The two presidents participated in a joint press conference where Duda stressed that they talked like good neighbors. He stressed that despite historic differences, Poland recognizes Germany as a European superpower and strong neighbor with whom Poland has had strong economic ties and fruitful cooperation over the past 30 years. 

The Polish president thanked President Frank-Walter Steinmeier for the German decision to station the Patriot systems to protect Polish airspace and defend NATO territory.

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“Poles have welcomed this as an important gesture, especially after what happened on our border when a stray rocket killed two Polish citizens,” he continued. He added that it was also an important concrete example of neighborly cooperation within NATO and solidarity with Poles. 

The two presidents talked about Ukraine and agreed that it needs military support. Duda highlighted that Poland has already contributed $2 billion worth of military aid to Ukraine, a large sum for Poland. 

The Polish head of state said that the costs of the reconstruction of Ukraine should be borne by Russia, as Russia is the aggressor responsible for the destruction the country has experienced. He was also adamant that those responsible for war crimes in Ukraine must be brought to justice as a way of deterring future aggressors.

President Duda admitted that the two presidents also discussed topics on which there is no such common agreement between the two countries, including the question of German reparations for the Second World War and the claim for them submitted by Poland. 

Finally, when asked about French President Emmanuel Macron’s view that Russia needed some security guarantees to begin negotiations for peace with Ukraine, Duda responded by saying that both Poland and Germany can guarantee that no one has any intention of invading Russia and killing its citizens.

“We can guarantee President Putin that we have no intention to do to his people what he is doing to his neighbors,” said Duda.

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