Poland’s Advice on Russia-EU Relations

159455826.jpgThe election may be imminent, but it seems that whichever way the polls turn (if you’ll forgive the pun) a Russia rapprochement is a real prospect on Poland’s political horizon.  Today’s Ria-Novosti reported that the brother of the late president, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, now contender for the presidential seat, is rooting for improved Russia relations, having been noted for Russophobe tendencies in the past.  Meanwhile Poland’s Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski has written an editorial for the New York Times, exhorting a favorable Russia-EU relationship.  Whilst acknowledging that political reforms should be exacted from Russia, the article firmly lays the onus for an amelioration of ties on the ‘chaotic’ EU: 

To speak with one voice the E.U. should follow three basic rules.

First it should seek an all-encompassing platform of cooperation with Russia, with everybody subscribing to a common list of E.U. interests. That is why we need to stick to the agreed mandate for the European Commission to negotiate a new Partnership and Cooperation Agreement with Russia.

Second, the relationship with Russia must not be developed at theexpense of other partners. Moscow should not be fast-tracked at theexpense of Ukraine or Moldova. Third countries are nobody’s “privilegedsphere of interest.” The E.U. should stand by its values andestablished norms of international conduct.

Lastly, we need to send Russia a clear message about what the E.U.really wants. What’s at stake are the rules by which our relationshipwith Moscow will be governed. If we blink, let us not be surprised bythe consequences.

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