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Warsaw will not allow UK to ‘discriminate’ against Poles

PR dla Zagranicy
John Beauchamp 29.05.2015 12:34
Following a meeting between PM Ewa Kopacz and visiting UK PM David Cameron in Warsaw, Friday morning, Poland’s Europe minister Rafał Trzaskowski has said that any plans made by Downing Street “must not discriminate against Poles”.
Polish PM Ewa Kopacz (R) with British PM David Cameron in Warsaw, 29.05.2015 Photo: PAP/Radek PietruszkaPolish PM Ewa Kopacz (R) with British PM David Cameron in Warsaw, 29.05.2015 Photo: PAP/Radek Pietruszka

EU reform, the situation in Ukraine as well as migration issues topped this morning’s agenda between Kopacz and Cameron.

“We spoke about the post-election situation in the UK, as well as London’s proposal to change EU law so that Cameron has a greater sway in trying to persuade British citizens to stay within the EU,” Trzaskowski said following the meeting.

“The EU would be much weaker without the UK,” Trzaskowski added, saying that Warsaw and London have similar stances on many issues, including defence and security, the single market and increasing the EU’s competitiveness.

Poland and the UK agree on some deregulation within the bloc, with Trzaskowski saying that “[Warsaw] agrees with Cameron’s idea on the withdrawal of certain directives which do not give any added value [to the EU]”.

However, a line was drawn in talks concerning the free movement of citizens – one of the key notions of the EU – with Trzaskowski saying that the “UK wants to make certain changes to its social security system, and PM Kopacz gave a clear signal that there cannot be any talk of discrimination against Poles”.

“We can talk, […] but the Polish government will not agree to any move which would discriminate against Polish citizens,” he underlined.

David Cameron’s visit to Warsaw is part of his plan to meet with the government heads of all EU member states in the run-up to June’s EU summit. Cameron is also in Berlin to meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Friday.

So far, France has openly contested any move to renogotiate EU treaties to give the UK more options on its membership, which mostly concern London’s wish to restrict access for migrants on social security and benefits.

Meanwhile, on Thursday it was announced that the referendum question which British, Irish and Commonwealth citizens will be asked by the end of 2017 is: “Should the UK remain a member of the EU?” (jb)

tags: Cameron, Kopacz
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