Polish-US alliance ‘strong as ever’: senior official
PR dla Zagranicy
The Polish-American alliance is “strong as ever," the Polish president’s chief of staff has said after talks in Washington amid tensions over a law that criminalises blaming Poland for Nazi German crimes.
Кшиштоф ЩерскийWikimedia Commons/Adrian Grycuk/CC BY-SA 3.0
Krzysztof Szczerski, a key aide of Polish President Andrzej Duda, said that on Thursday he held talks lasting an hour with Wess Mitchell, US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs.
"The Polish-American alliance is strong as ever," Szczerski told reporters following his meeting.
He added that the talks with Mitchell tackled topics including a "difference of opinion” over the new Polish law, which could impose a jail term on anyone who accuses Poland of being complicit in Nazi German crimes in World War II.
"This is indeed a topic where American opinions, including beyond the presidential administration itself... are very critical, and indeed this discussion should be conducted and will be conducted,” Szczerski said.
His talks in Washington came after the US State Department earlier this week denied that America had suspended high-level dialogue with Poland over the contested Polish law on Holocaust responsibility.
“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.
Nauert added: "Poland is a close NATO ally. That will remain; that hasn’t changed."
Nauert was responding to a report that America has decided the US president and vice president will not meet top Polish leaders until Warsaw amends the law on Holocaust responsibility.
The onet.pl news website reported that Polish leaders had unofficially been designated "persona non grata" in the White House over the Polish anti-defamation law, which came into force on March 1.
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.”