President praises Iraq veterans’ contribution to Poland's position
President Andrzej Duda on Monday told a group of Polish veterans who had fought in Iraq that they contributed to the respect that Poland has gained among its allies over the past 15 years.
On Monday the president visited the 17th Wielkopolska Mechanised Brigade in Węgrzyn, west Poland, to award distinctions to Polish soldiers who fought in the Iraqi city of Karbala in 2004.
President Andrzej Duda was accompanied by Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak.
"I thank you for your heroism, I thank you for your courage, I thank the colonel, his subordinates and all those who at that time commanded the Polish soldiers, for their wisdom. You have contributed to strengthening Poland's independence, because you have certainly had a hand in the fact that we are respected by our allies," the president said.
"For the past 15 years, Poland has been reaping the fruits of your excellent service, thanks to which our allies perceive us as they do and are present on our territory. We also owe to you, your courage, your heroism and your wisdom that our voice counts in the North Atlantic Alliance," President Andrzej Duda said, pointing to NATO's increased presence on Polish territory and the country's bigger say in NATO.
After the speeches, Andrzej Duda presented the 17th Wielkopolska Mechanised Brigade with a Polish national flag, which will accompany the unit on its forthcoming mission in Romania. (PAP)