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Home >> World
UPDATED: 08:46, September 14, 2006
Strong ties with U.S. not obstacle to ties with EU, Russia: Polish PM
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Poland's good relations with the United States would not pose as an obstacle to its ties with the European Union and Russia, Polish Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski said in an interview published on Wednesday.

Asked whether the United States would help strengthen Poland's ties with with Germany, Kaczynski told the Dziennik daily that he did not want to look at Polish-German relations as something that required an intervention from across the Atlantic.

Kaczynski was starting his first Washington visit on Wednesday since taking over government in July. He planned a mid-afternoon meeting with George W. Bush at the White House.

The two countries are on good terms, as Poland has sent troops to Iraq and Afghanistan in support of the U.S.-led operations. Some EU countries have criticized Warsaw for its troop presence in the two countries.

But the criticism from the EU was not too high a price to pay for the implementation of a sovereign country's foreign policy, Kaczynski said.

In August, Kaczynski visited the EU headquarters in Belgium one month after his inauguration, and met with the European Commission President Jose Manuel Barosso.

The EU visit, Kaczynski said, showed that Poland no longer had to choose between the European Union and the United States.

As prime minister, the interests of the Polish people were above everything, he said.

Washington has expressed its appreciation for Poland's support of its operations in Central Asia and the Middle East.

In Iraq, around 900 Polish soldiers currently command a multinational division south of Baghdad. Poland also has around 100 soldiers in Afghanistan as part of the NATO force.

Source: Xinhua

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