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Polish farmers at the Ukrainian border crossing: "Unfortunately, this blockade at the border endangers the supply of weapons for our boys at the front"

Photo: Attila Husejnow / SOPA Images / IMAGO

The days-long protests by Polish farmers are starting to have an impact: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Selenskyj wants to send Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal and other cabinet members to the blocked border crossings for negotiations. This applies especially to Defense Minister Rustem Umjerov, said Zelensky in a video address published in Ukrainian and Polish. This should happen before the second anniversary of the war on Saturday. "Unfortunately, this blockade at the border endangers the supply of weapons to our boys at the front," he said.

Zelensky also addressed Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk and Poland's President Andrzej Duda. »And I ask you, Donald, Prime Minister, to go to the border as well. Andrzej, Mr. President, I also ask you to support this dialogue," he appealed to the Polish leadership. It's about Ukraine's national security. “We can’t delay this,” said Zelensky. He is also ready to drive to the border himself. At the same time, the President turned to the European Commission. This should also send representatives to the desired meeting.

For days, Polish farmers have been trying to block trucks carrying Ukrainian grain at the Polish-Ukrainian border. Several thousand trucks are said to be piled up at the border crossings. The tone of the farmers' protests is becoming increasingly tense. Last week, farmers threw rotten eggs in front of the European Commission representation in Wroclaw. Burning car tires and smoke bombs were also reported.

The dissatisfaction of Polish farmers is directed against the EU agricultural policy, but also against the import of cheap agricultural products from Ukraine. On Tuesday, buses and freight trains from Ukraine were also the target of the protests for the first time.

Despite sea transport being possible again, the routes via Poland remain vital for Ukraine, which is being attacked by Russia - also for the already slow supply of weapons and ammunition. Poland is one of Ukraine's most important supporters in the war that has been going on for almost two years. Especially at the beginning of the Russian invasion, the neighboring country was one of the main destinations for millions of Ukrainian refugees.