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Tuesday, 29 April 2008

President of RP attends an Informal Meeting of Heads of State in Graz

On 29 April President of the Republic of Poland Mr Lech Kaczyński went on a visit to Austria. Presidents of Austria, Finland, Latvia, Germany, Poland, Portugal, Hungary and Italy gathered in Austria in Graz for an Informal Meeting of Heads of States.

President of RP Mr Lech Kaczyński took part in the session:”European Perspectives in the light of the Lisbon Treaty”. Subsequently, the Heads of States went on a tour of the Graz Cathedral and of the Art Centre.

In the evening, the Presidents and the First Ladies attended a dinner hosted by the Governor of Styria Mr Franz Voves in the Eggenberg Castle.

On 30 April, President of RP participated in the second plenary session:”Questions of European Foreign and Security Policy”. Upon its completion, President took part in the press conference of Eight Presidents.

Among others, the President made the following points:

”There may be diverging points of view - and this is only natural - but there is one shared opinion that the Lisbon Treaty is a success story. I believe that at the present stage of EU development, the maximum degree of integration of the European Union was achieved, commensurate with EU objectives. Undoubtedly, this Treaty is a success. Poland has already ratified the Treaty in the Parliament, only the signature of the President is missing but I do not see any problems with securing the latter. What was characteristic in our discussion was preoccupation of eight Presidents with external affairs beyond EU borders, and the concept of pursuing foreign policy was in the focus. Obviously, there are fundamental questions in this regard: what should such foreign policy founded on the principle of unanimity look like? Is it going to be policy pursued through individual programmes or is it going to be a more, say, comprehensive policy, a policy per say in all its aspects? The practise will show, nevertheless, our position is that the EU policy will be a parallel one, a policy possibly best coordinated with policies of individual member states which will not lose their status of subjects in international law. This is the position of our country. I would also like to mention Georgia. After yesterday’s reassuring conversations held by the NATO Secretary General and the US Secretary of State with President Saakashvili, today we are receiving new information which give grounds for concern. According to the information I obtained from the President, the fact that a high-ranking Russian officer was appointed chief of staff of the Abkhazian army, the so called Abkhazian army, certainly is very worrying.”

In the afternoon, the President of RP and Mrs Kaczynska took part in the luncheon hosted by President of the Republic of Austria Mr Heinz Fischer and Mrs Margit Fischer on the occasion of the Informal Summit of Eight Presidents.

During the visit, President of RP met with President of the Federal Republic of Germany Mr Horst Köhler and with President of the Republic of Latvia Mr Valdis Zatlers.

Later in the afternoon, the Presidential Couple returned to Poland. 
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