Andrzej Duda Advocates for Increased Aid to Ukraine
President of Poland, Andrzej Duda, believes that the assistance provided to Ukraine by Western allies is insufficient and advocates for its augmentation. He expressed this view in an interview with The Washington Post.
According to the Polish President, the aid Ukraine receives from Western countries is not merely an act of charity.
"I don't see it in those terms—neither that we're performing an act of charity for Ukraine, nor that Ukraine is being charitable towards us. Let's start with the fact that Russia's aggression in Ukraine was not provoked by anyone. No one attacked Russia, quite the opposite. Are we, the international democratic community, willing to allow a situation where Russia prevents the Ukrainian people from choosing their own government, deciding which alliances they will belong to, and who their allies will be?" Andrzej Duda posed this rhetorical question.
In his words, Poles have many reasons to aid Ukrainians who are fighting for their freedom.
"Today, Ukrainians are fighting against Russia, defending their independence, sovereignty, freedom, and territory. They are defending themselves. We're sending them weapons. Why? Because we want to support them in defending their own territory. And by 'we,' I don't just mean Poles. It's us, Americans, French, British, Germans, the entire democratic world. We, Poles, have many reasons to provide weapons to Ukrainians. But the entire democratic world also understands that any aggressor breaching the borders of a democratic state in 21st century Europe must be stopped," emphasized Andrzej Duda.
According to the Polish President, one of the major threats of the conflict is a nuclear catastrophe at one of the Ukrainian nuclear power plants. However, he is confident that Russia won't use nuclear weapons against Ukraine.
"If someone were to ask me about the nuclear threat, I'm far more concerned about potential issues with nuclear power plants in Ukraine. I fear that something might happen that looks like a nuclear accident. Because, in my opinion, in my conviction, the threat of a nuclear power plant explosion is much greater than the use of nuclear weapons in this case," stated Andrzej Duda.
As the interview coincided with the anniversary of the Warsaw Uprising, the Polish President noted that the courage of Poles demonstrated to Stalin and other Soviet leaders that incorporating Poland into the USSR after World War II was impossible. This courage also helped Poles break free from Moscow's influence in 1989 and build an independent state.
Recalling that in April 2023, Poland's Minister of Finance, Magdalena Rzeczkowska, stated that since the start of the full-scale Russian invasion, Poland had provided Ukraine with assistance amounting to 50 billion zlotys (approximately 11 billion euros), which accounts for 2% of Poland's GDP. This evidently includes aid to Ukrainian refugees in Poland. According to data from the European Parliament released in June 2023, Poland provided Ukraine with 3.527 billion euros in total assistance (170 million euros in humanitarian aid, 934 million euros in financial aid, and 2.423 billion euros in military aid), not accounting for refugee assistance.