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President Ilves: Estonia and Poland can offer decisiveness, strength and responsibility to the European Union and NATO


The President of Poland, Bronisław Komorowski, and Anna Komorowska yesterday held an official dinner to honour the Estonian Head of State, and Evelin Ilves, who made a state visit to Poland.

Estonia and Poland are primarily brought together by security, attempts to make the Baltic Sea region more uniform and successful, and extending a mutual business contract, told President Ilves in his greeting to the Polish Head of State.

He recalled how Czesław Miłosz once wrote about dividing Europe into a better and worse Europe, confirming: "Today, we – Estonia and Poland included – have shown that such a method for dividing Europe is wrong and unfair. We have stepped backed into a Europe that we were once physically torn from, yet where we still remained, mentally. We will never leave this Europe again."

"We all know the meaning of Europe's indifference, shady deals and secret protocols that deprive someone of freedom, independence and their own state," President Ilves recalled, adding that, "Estonia and Poland both have their eyes on the establishment of a strong and successful Europe. We are committed to shaping the common future of Europe."

There are no more backyard countries in Europe, emphasised the Estonian Head of State, when speaking about the aggression of Russia in Ukraine, and he went on to say that a, "democratic Europe must rid itself of the pragmatism and smell of gas in its relations with Moscow.

We must not be forced into modesty in choosing a time to join these organisations or our size when the policies of the European Union and NATO are shaped, told President Ilves, in citing the former Speaker (Marshal) of the Polish Senate and Honorary Chairman of the Estonian-Polish Society, Juliusz Szymański, spoken in August 1930: "History does not know small and big nations; it only knows nations with a small and big spirit..."

"Estonia and Poland can offer decisiveness, strength and responsibility to the European Union and NATO in standing for their common values, and we can shape relations with those that give nothing for our values, when appropriate," told the Estonian Head of State.

According to the president, Estonia and Poland have both proved their responsibility by visibly contributing to our defence abilities and, in turn, those of NATO, by allocating approximately 2 per cent of our GDP to the respective budget.

This morning, President Ilves opened an Estonian-Polish business forum in Warsaw with the Polish Head of State. President Ilves is accompanied in Poland by a representative business delegation that consists of 24 businessmen. Last year, Poland became the seventh most important trading partner of Estonia, behind Germany; the scope of trade between Estonia and Poland was the largest – 23 per cent.

Today, the Estonian Head of State will meet with the Prime Minister of Poland, Donald Tusk, and will give a speech entitled "25 years on: changes in mental geography in Europe" at the University of Warsaw. He and his wife will also pay a visit to the Warsaw Uprising Museum (Muzeum Powstania Warszawskiego).

On Thursday, the Estonian Head of State and Evelin Ilves will visit Gdansk where they will place a wreath at the monument to the shipbuilders who died in 1970. President Ilves will visit the exhibition "Road to Freedom", Gdansk Science and Technology Park, the Convent of Polonia that also has links to Estonia, and the Polish-Estonian business seminar that takes place in Sopot.

Evelin Ilves will visit the "Budzik" ("Alarm Clock") private clinic in Warsaw for children in a coma, a school for children with Down syndrome, of which Anna Komorowska is a patron, museum of ethnography, workshop of jewellers, Wytwornia Antidotum, and the World Hearing Center.

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