"We can build European security together"
Together we can build security in the European area and strive for constructive decisions at the NATO summit in Warsaw, President Andrzej Duda said Friday in Berlin after talks with German President Joachim Gauck and Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Andrzej Duda said at a press conference attended with Gauck that his task was to "build the best-possible strategic relations with Germany".
"I have absolutely no doubt that our great task, my task on the Polish side, is to build the best-possible strategic relations with Germany. (...)I am convinced that together we can build security in the European area and strive for good and constructive decisions at next year's NATO summit in Warsaw."
President Duda noted that many issues related to Polish-German relations needed to be continued, among others youth exchange between both countries. Commenting his and Gauck's talks about minority issues, Duda noted that matters connected with mother tongue teaching in the German minority in Poland and the Polish community in Germany needed "some correction".
Andrzej Duda reminded that Poland was already taking in large numbers of refugees from Ukraine. In this context he stressed that Poland was interested in the termination of the Ukraine conflict as its further escalation could prove a serious problem.
President Gauck stressed that Poland was an "important partner" for Germany in the EU and NATO, and that Germany wanted to step up this cooperation. Commenting ongoing debates about the EU's refugee programme, Gauck said that he and Duda had discussed the issue and that Germany planned to strive for "binding obligations" regarding the admission of refugees as the matter should not be decided by individual EU members.
During his meeting with Duda Gauck stressed that he admired the Poles' courage and determination in fighting for their rights and their freedom. He added that the fact that the Polish president decided to visit Berlin shortly after taking office was "an important signal".
According to the German president Poles and Germans have managed to build "a huge capital of mutual trust" in their relation over the past decades.
Gauck and Duda also discussed the 25th anniversary of Poland's and Germany's neighbourhood treaty.
President Duda's talks with Merkel focused on security, NATO, the EU and the refugee problem. Commenting the talks after the meeting, Andrzej Duda said he felt he had "found understanding" on the German side. Duda stressed that most important for Poland were security and the resolution of the Ukraine conflict, and voiced contentment at Merkel's proposal to remain in constant touch with him on European and global affairs. (PAP, own information)