Poland’s ambassador to India Adam Burakowski has said that New Delhi can convince Moscow that the ongoing war doesn’t benefit the country. Russia invaded Ukraine in February, impacting Europe, especially frontline states like Poland, which have been inundated by refugees. Poland which borders Ukraine has played a key role in providing humanitarian assistance to those fleeing the country.
Speaking to a group of journalists, Ambassador Burakowski said, “India can talk to the other side and convince them that this war is also not for the benefit of Russia. I mean, Russia, doesn’t benefit from this war, and Russia can stop this war by withdrawing troops from occupied territories of Ukraine.”
India and Russia have close and historical ties, with defence and now energy being the main pillars of the relationship. The ambassador pointed out that India’s foreign policy is of “neutrality, which means, India talks to everyone”, explaining, “India has a dialogue with other countries, there is a need of a dialogue and since India has this special relationship with Russia, why not…”. Poland foreign minister Zbigniew Rau was in Delhi earlier this year for the Raisina dialogue, and also held talks with India’s external affairs minister Dr S Jaishankar.
Poland played a key role in the evacuation of Indians, mostly students from Ukraine when the invasion started. The country helped in the evacuation of around 6,000 Indians and even announced a visa waiver for them as they fled Ukraine. He said, “Operation Ganga was an example of good cooperation between India and Poland. Poland provided the possibility to conduct special flights”. In all, India evacuated more than 22,000 of its nationals under ‘Operation Ganga’ launched by it.
The ambassador slammed Russia, saying that the country is “using food as a weapon, they are destroying crops of Ukraine and stealing crops from Ukraine. They are blocking ports, from which Ukraine wants to export grain”. He highlighted, “fortunately, there was an agreement signed on 22nd of July in Istanbul on the safe transportation of grains and fertilizers from Ukrainian ports to global markets. Just one day after signing the agreement, Russia attacked the port of Odesa which showed intentions of Russia.” He batted for Europe to decouple from Russian energy resources as well.