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State Dept. denies US has suspended high-level dialogue with Poland

PR dla Zagranicy
Paweł Kononczuk 07.03.2018 10:32
The US State Department has denied that America has suspended security cooperation or high-level dialogue with Poland over a contested Polish law on Holocaust responsibility.
Heather Nauert. Picture: www.state.gov
Heather Nauert. Picture: www.state.gov

“The reports that allege any kind of a suspension in security cooperation or high-level dialogue – all of that is simply false,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert told reporters on Tuesday.

She said that America’s “security posture, as it pertains to our ally, Poland, is not changing. People are trying to find distance or space between our longstanding relationship, and there is no space there.”

Nauert added: "Poland is a close NATO ally. That will remain; that hasn’t changed."

Nauert was asked by reporters to respond to a report that America has decided the US president and vice president will not meet top Polish leaders until Warsaw amends a contested law on Holocaust responsibility.

The onet.pl news website has reported that Polish leaders have unofficially been designated "persona non grata" in the White House over an anti-defamation law that came into force in Poland on March 1.

The website added that the United States was threatening to block the financing of joint military projects.

Senior Polish official Jacek Sasin, who heads the government’s Standing Committee, said that the onet.pl report was designed to deliver “a blow to the Polish government and [as] an attempt to cause great anxiety in Polish society, because we highly value good relations with the United States -- this is a guarantee of our security.”

Sasin added: “This shows what kind of informational war is being waged at the moment against the Polish government.”

The onet.pl website is controlled by the German-Swiss group Ringier Axel Springer.

Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Bartosz Cichocki has responded to the onet.pl report by saying: “It's not true. There was no ultimatum of this kind.”

Despite pressure from the United States and Israel, Polish President Andrzej Duda last month signed the new law, which could impose a jail term on anyone who accuses Poland of being complicit in Nazi German crimes.

In Poland, the new rules are seen as a way of fighting the use of the phrase “Polish death camps,” which many say implies the country's involvement in the Holocaust during World War II.


Source: PAP/www.state.gov

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