I support Poland’s membership in EU: president

Poland’s President Andrzej Duda said in an interview with the Polish private news station TVN24 that he is, and has always been, a supporter of Poland's presence in the European Union.

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“I have always been a supporter of Poland’s presence in the EU... I voted for it in the referendum,” the president said.

He added that there are problems in the EU, but Poland “earned a lot” thanks to its membership in the Union.

“Economically, Europe gained due to the fact that such a big country as Poland opened itself, and its market, to much stronger competition,” the Polish head of state said.

He also emphasised that currently “there is no serious political faction which cannot see the benefits of Poland’s membership in the EU and which says that Poland should develop itself outside the Union.”

New national holiday?

On June 4, Poland will celebrate the 30th anniversary of the first partially free elections under the communist reign. The President was asked if it should be celebrated as a national holiday.

“I do not know, but this matter could be taken into consideration,” he said, adding that if a majority of MPs and Senators would like that day to be a national holiday, he could support such an initiative.

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The president said that many people worldwide say that the end of communism started with the fall of the Berlin Wall. “The fact is that victory over communism started with the great deeds of Poles... We were the pioneers, who paved the way and finally caused the change of the political situation in the whole of Central Europe,” he emphasised.

There will not be one celebration commemorating June 4, because of the dispute between former members of Solidarity and the current political quarrel in Poland. In the opinion of the President, “it is a bit sad for people who have such memories as I do.”

“There was one purpose: to overthrow communism, to free ourselves from the claws of the Soviet Union. We all wanted that... People of Solidarity were one group for us, we appreciated and respected them,” he said. “It is a shame the dispute in Poland is so strong now,” he added.

Possible meeting with Donald Trump

President Duda also expressed his hope that he will meet his American counterpart, Donald Trump, by the end of September. In June, the Polish head of state will visit the US.

“If President Trump would like to meet, I will be eager to do so,” he said. “For me, this would be an opportunity to settle many important Polish issues and we have good relations with the US,” President Duda said.

He also stressed that he sent an invitation to Mr Trump to the commemorations of the 80th anniversary of the outbreak of WWII which will be held in September in Poland.