Poland – keeping the door open

 

Sir, – It was with great interest that I read your editorial regarding EU enlargement (“Keep the door open”, February 19th).

I fully agree with your conclusion that the European Union should open up for the western Balkan states.

I can proudly say Poland is a strong supporter of the open-door policy and is engaged actively in helping the candidates on their way to the EU. Poland hosted the Berlin Process Summit in 2019, and for years it has been assisting the western Balkan states’ administrations with our priceless first-hand experience on the political and economic transformation required.

Poland’s actions are being met with the gratitude of both Balkan partners and of our eastern neighbours, whom we have been continuously supporting within the Eastern Partnership initiative.

My country has accomplished its term of non-permanent membership in UN Security Council. The Polish presidency of the Human Rights Council has just begun, and in 2022 Poland will take the lead as chair-in-office of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

My country monitors and effectively defends one of the longest EU’s external borders. Hundreds of Polish soldiers, policemen and civil staff contribute to EU and Nato missions abroad. Our soldiers stand side by side with the Irish Defence Forces in the UN peacekeeping mission in Lebanon.

Let’s not forget Polish centuries-long democratic traditions, starting with the first modern constitution in 1791 and eventually resulting with Poland becoming a cradle of the Solidarity movement. In 2020 we will be celebrating the 40th anniversary of the founding of the trade union that gave the spark to the fall of communism in Europe.

Considering all of the above, it crosses my mind that labelling Poland an “authoritarian regime” does not seem just and objective. – Yours, etc,

ANNA SOCHANSKA,

Ambassador of the

Republic of Poland

to Ireland,

Ballsbridge,

Dublin 4.